poems

I am not sure if I've discussed my love of poetry here before or not. So I'll just say it now: I love poetry. I have enjoyed it for a long while, but only recently has my love really grown. In my (very large) stack of bedside reads is Why Poetry by Matthew Zapruder. In it, he discusses how poetry really is meant for everyone and explains how to enjoy it and understand it more. Zapruder references tons of poems throughout (naturally) and I've been looking them up and keeping track of ones I really enjoy. I hope one of these speaks to you. 

The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock by T.S. Eliot

Song of Myself by Walt Whitman

won't you celebrate with me by Lucille Clifton

Daybreak in Alabama by Langston Hughes

I Like My Body When It Is With Your by E.E. Cummings

In addition to Why Poetry, I have really been enjoying a daily poetry newsletter that I signed up for, Pome by Matthew Ogle. It's all contemporary poetry and I've discovered lots of poems that I really like. 

weekend reading

Hello everyone. Here are some links for you to enjoy that I've accumulated for a couple of weeks. I hope you find something you like!

Summer always has me wanting to make friendship bracelets. These are really cute and look like they'd be easy to take on and off. 

These socks look so cozy! I have yet to do a patterned sock, so maybe this will be next on my list. 

Loved this post about giving yourself a dress code. I totally want to do the same. It's so much easier to get dressed when most things go with one another and are definitely your style. 

I'll continue the clothes-related links now..."unflattering" clothes. Yes. I am a fan of oversized things. They truly do keep you cooler!

I want everything on this site

This dress. I want it real bad. 

I am all about the elastic waistband these days. These shorts have one and they'd be cute in all sorts of fabrics. 

Look at this yarn! Really clever self-striping!

I really love brownies, so you know I bookmarked this recipe when I came across it. 

Did you ever press flowers when you were growing up? I definitely did, though I mostly forgot about it until I read this post. Now I want to press ALL the flowers. 

A friend recently told me about this site and wow, I am inspired. 

Back in April, I went to the DMA and Laura Owens had an exhibit there. I am still thinking about this horse painting of hers. Love the colors. 

I am super picky about perfumes. I will find one I like and wear it for years and years. Inevitably, it will get discontinued and I have to search for a new one. Such has been the case with Oud Sahara, a perfume I got at Urban Outfitters a year or two ago. The closest thing I've found to it is Le Labo Santal 33, but I live with a budget, so I'm looking for more affordable options. I'm wondering if Demeter's oud will smell the same?! They have soooo many scents- i had a lot of fun looking through them on their website. 
*UPDATE* In researching Oud Sahara, I have found out that UO has it again!! Hooray! I better stock up!

15 Tiny Things That Could Seriously Improve Your Life In Just a Month. I definitely want to do ALL of these. Some I'm doing but could stand to do more of. 

And finally, one of my friends posted last weekend about a mala she made. It made me want to make one. One of my besties also saw that friend's mala and also wanted to make one. So we're gonna do this thing (eventually). Here's a post my bestie sent me to get us started on our mala journey. 

See y'all later!

seattle

*I started writing this on April 1. For real. Here I am, finally posting. Enjoy!

Every few weeks at the end of the last quarter of 2017, I'd get an email from corporate. Make sure to use your 2017 PTO! It expires in April! I'd read these emails and promptly delete them. Then I looked at my carryover PTO and I was like "oh wow. I need to go somewhere". I had about a week's worth of days to take off! I started emailing my friend C about a potential trip to Seattle, where she lives. 

Last February, C was diagnosed with stage IV glioblastoma and was given 12 months to live. She did the requisite surgery, radiation, and chemo, and overhauled her lifestyle to reduce her stress and changed her diet. She has had no evidence of cancer ever since! The week before I went to Seattle, she had yet another clean MRI, a huge cause for celebration. 

So this trip was part vacay, part celebration of my friend making it past her bleak prognosis. 

Seattle is one of my most favorite cities. I came to know it via a YoungLife camp in British Columbia, Malibu Club. Malibu is one of the most beautiful places I have ever had the pleasure to see. Every time I went to Malibu, I first had to make my way to Seattle. Every time I am in the PNW, I want to move there. This time was no different! 

Day 1, March 28- arrived in Seattle around lunchtime. I took an Uber to C's house in Fremont. We spent the afternoon walking around town, going to a fabric shop and a grocery store, then headed to the house for a snack. We then went on another walk to her son's preschool to pick him up. After that, it was time for dinner prep, done to the sounds of a great playlist. We then did a little something that became a nightly routine- as C and her husband put the kids to bed, I would foam roll (I've been doing physical therapy again...for my hamstring this time). Then, C would come down with cups of tea for us and we'd craft and watch 2 episodes of Queer Eye as I iced my poor little glutes and hamstrings. At that point, it was about 9:15pm and time for C to take her chemo pill. Then we'd call it a night!

obligatory view-from-the-plane photo

shoutout to the girl sitting next to me who would lean all the way forward when i wanted to take a pic!

the cherry blossoms were in full bloom everywhere and i couldn't help but take tons of pics of them!

Day 2, March 29- Thursday morning we got going pretty early and found ourselves in Downtown Seattle. We walked around for a bit, then headed to Drygoods Design. Ever since I have been feeling better, I have been knitting away, so it should come as no surprise that instead of finding fabric and a dress pattern, I ended up with a skein of Manos in a colorway (Wedgwood) that reminds me of Seattle, and a beautiful pair of Lykke knitting needles. I am determined to become a sock knitter once and for all. We then went to The London Plane for a little tea/croissant/kombucha break, then headed down to Pike Place to look at all the gorgeous tulips. From there, we literally ran to catch a bus back to Fremont, where we enjoyed a lunch at home and then we walked to "old lady yoga". Old lady yoga is just a restorative class, which is absolutely my favorite kind of yoga class. Afterward, we walked home, just in time for the littlest boy to come home. Shortly thereafter, we walked to pick up C's older son from preschool, then headed back for dinner prep. A thing about C- she is a fantastic cook, so all of our meals were SO good! This night's meal in particular was amazing- some kind of grain (we had a different grain every night I was there- it's hard to keep them all straight), broccoli with a Spiral Diner-inspired sauce, roasted yellow cherry tomatoes, topped with a large, warm chunk of feta cheese. After dinner, I brought out Tenzi and Uno and we played a few rounds of each. Then, it was time for our nightly routine. So far, the socks were going well. 

 The London Plane

The London Plane

 The London Plane has some really gorgeous greenery and flowers as well as food, and these were outside the door. 

The London Plane has some really gorgeous greenery and flowers as well as food, and these were outside the door. 

 Classic Seattle pic. 

Classic Seattle pic. 

 Pike Place always has the prettiest and cheapest flowers.

Pike Place always has the prettiest and cheapest flowers.

 Drygoods purchases.

Drygoods purchases.

 Started the socks while C made dinner. 

Started the socks while C made dinner. 

 The amazing meal C made! I tried recreating it at home and it wasn't as good, though it was pretty tasty. 

The amazing meal C made! I tried recreating it at home and it wasn't as good, though it was pretty tasty. 

Day 3, March 30- C has been wanting to try her hand at garment sewing, so I told her while I visited, I would help her with that task. Originally, she wanted to make herself a dress, but given our time constraints and my inability to commit to a fabric or a pattern, we settled on making Wiksten Harem Pants for a few babies in our lives. The pattern is super easy and great for a first-time garment sewist. Our pants turned out SO cute!! By the time we were done sewing, it was time for 2 little boys to make their way home. We loaded them up in the stroller and ventured down to a salad restaurant in Fremont. On the way home we passed by the Fremont Troll, as did every other tourist in town. We then made our way to The Book Larder, which is every cook and baker's dream come true- a whole store dedicated to cook books!! It was overwhelming in the very best way. After that, we went back to the house and crafted for a bit. I turned the heel on the sock I brought with me (not my new sock...don't worry, I am not THAT fast!) and it went perfectly well! Then, back to dinner prep and the nightly routine. 

 there's nothing better than being in your jammers all morning long while crafting with a friend. 

there's nothing better than being in your jammers all morning long while crafting with a friend. 

 I HAVE CUTE AGGRESSION

I HAVE CUTE AGGRESSION

 at this point i pretended i was in 10 things i hate about you. 

at this point i pretended i was in 10 things i hate about you. 

 cookbooks galore at the book larder!!!

cookbooks galore at the book larder!!!

Day 4, March 31- This will go in history as the most gorgeous day that has ever existed in Seattle, and possibly the whole world. It was a gorgeously sunny day and the temp was utter perfection. My friend K picked me up and we drove down to the ferry terminal. A quick aside about K- we met in 2015 when she was still living in Dallas...we met at a weaving class (of course). It turned out that we also went to the same church and knew several of the same people. We never saw each other in Dallas again, so hanging out in Seattle was literally only the 2nd time I've ever seen her! Luckily she is cool so spending the whole day with her was awesome! We got on the Bainbridge ferry and walked around the sun deck and took photos. Once we arrived in Bainbridge, we went to Cafe Nola for lunch. K had this amazing squash pancake thing. I don't remember what it was exactly, but it was so delicious. We then walked down to Churchmouse Yarns and Teas, aka the best store ever. I have been trying to buy yarn only if I have a project in mind for it, so I did not buy any yarn (shocking), however, I ended up with a beautiful shawl pin and some much needed blocking pins. Then we went to a bakery for some coffee and cookies. We then drove down to Bay Hay and Feed, where there were soooo many beautiful plants in bloom! The air smelled strongly of lavender, which is exactly what Malibu Club smells like, and I found myself feeling incredibly nostalgic. Like, I would look up at the conifer trees and almost start crying ahaha. What can I say, I am sentimental! We found some cute baby chicks and took tons of photos and videos for our instagram stories ha! We drove back to the ferry terminal after stopping at a grocery store, then we enjoyed THE MOST BEAUTIFUL FERRY RIDE THAT HAS EVER EXISTED. I took around 5 million of the exact same photo. The view of downtown was RIDICULOUS. It was so pretty! AND WE COULD SEE MOUNT RAINIER!!! All caps and exclamations points necessary. A better day for a ferry ride DOES NOT EXIST. I came home in time for one last home-cooked dinner, many, many rounds of Uno, and our nightly routine. 

 had to get a ferry pic with the space needle in the background duh.

had to get a ferry pic with the space needle in the background duh.

 this is def when i was tearing up at the lavender smell while looking at the trees. memories, man.

this is def when i was tearing up at the lavender smell while looking at the trees. memories, man.

 WHAT EVEN IS THIS DAY

WHAT EVEN IS THIS DAY

IMG_7333.jpg
 OK STOP IT, SEATTLE

OK STOP IT, SEATTLE

Day 5, April 1- This morning was the first that was stereotypically Seattle- it was cold and rainy. But alas, the children had an Easter egg hunt to get to, so we bundled up and walked to the neighbor's house. One of my favorite things about Seattle is that Seattlites don't let the rain ruin their plans. Everyone has the appropriate clothing and just carries on in their rain gear. Having been to the PNW several times, I knew this and packed my raincoat :) Saying goodbye was very bittersweet, as goodbyes tend to be. I was so happy to have gotten to spend several days with C. We picked up right where we left off and it was like old times when we would watch Scandal and knit together while her little one napped. How special it was to do that again and be hopeful that we will get to do it again in the future. 

 C and me. 

C and me. 

 the taxi line was unlike anything i have ever seen before. it went back FOREVER. 

the taxi line was unlike anything i have ever seen before. it went back FOREVER. 

 last peek of seattle. 

last peek of seattle. 

 very bumpy flight but it looked pretty cool out the window. 

very bumpy flight but it looked pretty cool out the window. 

 in-flight entertainment. 

in-flight entertainment. 

 when i saw this i immediately thought of a quilt. it is true: i am a crafter. 

when i saw this i immediately thought of a quilt. it is true: i am a crafter. 

 i got quite a bit done on my sock! 

i got quite a bit done on my sock! 

weekend reading

Hey y'all. How was your week? Mine was spent wearing head to toe linen like every day, so I'd say mine was pretty great. I'm all about staying cool in this ridiculous heat. Here are some things you can read while enjoying the a/c this weekend. 

The week or 2 before I went to the craft retreat, I was sleeping really, really poorly. I was waking up multiple times a night and was not feeling great. Then on the retreat, I slept badly too (I am a VERY high maintenance sleeper as you're about to see...sharing a room with 3 other people does not do good things for my sleep!). I am happy to report that since coming home, I have been sleeping SO much better. I have been more intentional about my ~sleep hygiene~ and I think that's really helped! Here are some things I'm doing:
   Turning off screens at 9pm. I have an alarm on my phone that tells me to do so. All my closest friends know about it and will hear it and say "there's your bedtime alarm". lolol. They're not wrong. 
   At 9 i'll do quiet activities that don't require screens- write in my gratitude journal (or regular journal), maybe foam roll or do yoga a little, meditate with this app, listen to a record, knit, or read. 
   I have another alarm that goes off at 9:50pm and that's my actual bedtime alarm. At that point I'll put some lavender and cedar essential oil in my diffuser, put some lavender oil on my wrists, neck, and temples (I made my own rollerball- several drops of lavender oil + almond oil in a rollerball from Whole Foods), slather some Maty's Baby Chest Rub on my chest (this shit smells amazing. I use it only for that reason. Sometimes I put it on in the morning as a sort of perfume.), put my #nightlotion on my hands and feet and give myself a lil foot rub and neck rub, sometimes I'll use one of these bad boys, turn on my sound app (I use the car sound), and then I put on my beloved sleep mask (in the last 10 years, I have had only TWO of these masks. They are amazing. I wash it every week and it holds up great. I replaced it only because the elastic on my first mask wore out completely. I then replaced only the elastic and when that wore out too I got a new mask. It blocks all the light out and is great for me, a back, side, AND stomach sleeper!) and pretty much immediately fall asleep. 

Ok, wow. That was really long. But hopefully it helps someone else out there who's having sleep probs. Sleep truly is the foundational self-care!

Something I have been LOVING lately is a poem-a-day email that I signed up for. It's all contemporary poetry and so good. If you're into poetry, check it out. I've definitely flagged a few to keep. 

Adored this post, especially that opening quote. 

I'm trying to figure out how to DIY this. It's super cute and would be perfect for the Texas summer. 

This summery oatmeal sounds so delightful. 

This video made me smile. 

Y'all prob know by now that I love the podcast Spilled Milk. Last week, a certain New Yorker article was referenced and I was intrigued. So I read the article. And I wish I hadn't. Click at your own risk

Very thought provoking

Permanent jewelry. This is SO COOL. 

Here's hoping that this weekend will result in me finally sewing the buttonholes on my Alder dress! If that happens, expect a post about said finished dress very soon. 
xoxo

weekend(ish) reading

Over the weekend I was at a craft retreat in the hill country of Texas. It was so nice to get away and spend several days with a bunch of other crafty women. Most of us sewed or knitted during the retreat. It was so fun to do what is usually a solitary activity with a bunch of other gals and to share meals with them and watch movies and tell stories and laugh. 

On the last morning of the retreat, I hung out on the porch in the morning for a bit and listened to birds, goats, and roosters in the distance. It was very restorative, much like how Lucy is restored in nature

While preparing for the retreat, I was looking up all sorts of sewing patterns and tried to decide what I wanted to make. It was a difficult decision! I found this pattern in my search (though I did not make it). I also found this dress pattern, as well as this top.

I ended up actually making the Grainline Studio Alder dress (minus doing the buttonholes and attaching buttons), a kimono that I drafted myself, and cut out all the pieces for a Kalle Dress. I also knit some on my seed stitch wrap and a sock. This Alder sew along was super super helpful when I was making my dress! I cut my Kalle Dress from rayon fabric and this post was helpful for dealing with rayon. 

Bandanas. I'm sure I have talked about them here before, but I'm just really feeling them lately. Erin at Reading My Tea Leaves has been feeling them too and also keeps writing about them. This week she linked to several and I found a few I really liked:
These remind me of Nani Iro double gauze. I bet they are so soft!
Love the moon phases and good luck symbols on this one
Texas theme and pink?!
Silky watercolor perfection
I usually tie my bandanas in a knot around my neck, but I think this slide would be super chic. I'm also thinking that in the meantime, a ring might work! 

Speaking of rings, I got this one at Madewell last week and it has become a part of my daily rotation. One of my friends saw it and immediately said, "Under his eye," which made me laugh but then also shudder. 

This made me crave Swedish Fish so bad

Everyday I am more and more discouraged about the amount of waste happening in our world. There is just so much. What is the solution? This post is particularly sobering

Hopefully I'll get some buttons on my dress and be posting about it here soon! 

knitting!

As promised, a knitting post this week! I am going to break it down into what I am currently working on and then yarns and patterns/projects I am interested in!

WIPs!
I have been knitting socks and my never-ending seed stitch wrap lately. I am LOVING sock knitting, which is something I would not have said just a few years ago. I have a DK weight sock going and a traditional sock-weight sock going too. In the past, I have done 2 at a time toe-up socks, but this time I am doing one at a time so that I can really get the construction method down pat. I am doing things like taking measurements and counting stitches and all those things you do when you are trying to really understand something. I cast on both socks with Judy's Magic Cast On and have turned heels on both socks with the Fish Lips Kiss Heel. I'll post a proper update of my WIPs eventually, complete with photos. 

Yarns!
In addition to sock knitting, I have been researching eco-friendly yarns. I have come across a few from Woolful and then learned about another one recently. Let's just go in list form, shall we?
-Camellia Fiber Company. I am absolutely swooning over the colors of these yarns!
-Sincere Sheep. Love it when a company can tell me exactly what sheep breed their yarn is from.
-Wing and a Prayer. Of course, a classic! 
-De Rurum Natura. Again, loving the colors. 
-O Wool. Can't forget about good old O Wool. 
-Beaverslide Mule-Spun Yarn. Can we please talk about the beauty that is the Hidden Lake color way?!
-Woolly Mammoth Fibre Company. I just found out about this one this week and I am already in love with their beautiful yarns and instagram. 
-Hey Lady Hey is another one I have been looking into lately, though the shop is currently closed.

Patterns/Projects!
-Like the entire rest of the knitting world, I am OBSESSED with the Tecumseh sweater. LOOK AT THIS GREEN ONE WHAT. 
-Also obsessed with this sweater called Rug. Lurving the colors on this one
-Nikoline socks. Allllll the heart eyes. 
-This has me wanting to make myself a bonnet. 
-I feel like I've already talked about this Kennings Yoke sweater, but it deserves being mentioned again cause of that yoke, yo. 
-Loving these socks
-Gorgeous colors on this Lovella
-Donovan sweater from Quince & Co. 
-Dane cardigan
-Cannot even with Jen's hybrid cardigan.
-Some Time Alone. Big? Lacy? Shawl? OKAY. 
-Black Ice sweater. 
-The colors of Ashleigh's shawl. omg. 
-Love love love these bright colors
-Kirsten Kapur can do no wrong

That was fun! 

weekend reading

Well hello, my friends. 

Sorry for the silence. We all know I am not the most regular of bloggers. I have missed this place nonetheless and thought i'd pop in with some links. I have some knitting and making things to share as well, but for now, let's catch up!

Do you ever get "stuck" listening to an album. Like it's ALL you want to listen to? I am in that sort of phase right now with Earthtones by Bahamas. Cannot. Stop. Listening. Nor do I want to. 

I have been...knitting socks. For real. I kept telling you guys I wanted to do it, and I really am. It's going well. Finding this blog has also been encouraging for my endeavor. 

I am very late to the Starbucks "medicine ball" train, but now that I know about it, I am on the train. It's pretty good! This homemade version sounds even more delicious. I opt out of the peach tea part cause I have a huge aversion to anything peach flavored (except, of course, actual peaches), but it is still really good!

Spanikopita scones?! Sign me up. 

I really want some overalls (I am sure I have mentioned that here many a time) and I really like these ones! Perfect for the hot Texas summer. 

I LOVE this sweet art quilt idea

I have nothing to say about this other than IT IS NOT OKAY. 

This makes me want to go get some foliage string lights. 

I have been wearing a lot of skirts lately and it has me wanting more dresses in my wardrobe (so I don't have to figure out what top to wear!) and this one could def be a contender. 

A couple of weekends ago I did my grocery shopping at Trader Joe's. I normally go to Target, so i was very pleasantly surprised at all the fun stuff they have at TJs. I made sure to pick up some polenta because it's a great pantry staple. I found this recipe after I bought it and it sounds so good!

That's all I've got, pals! Stay tuned for a knitting post tomorrow! 

weekend reading

Hi friends! 

I am spending the weekend in East Texas at my friend's lakehouse. We had a gorgeously sunny and warm day yesterday and as we drove to the lake, the skies turned dark and dangerous and today it has only been in the mid-30s! We are enjoying this last (hopefully) cold day by hunkering down, drinking lattes, watching Netflix, building a fire, and otherwise staying cozy. What better way to spend a cold afternoon than with some perfect links?!

Really digging these yarn art wall hangings. And I have all the necessary items to make one (or a few!).

I have never been into arm knitting, but I really like this pillow and it makes me want to try arm knitting. 

Did I write this?! The answer is no, but we all know I definitely could have. As much as I hate to hear that other people have also caused themselves pain and injuries from knitting, it's nice to know that I'm not the only one. 

You guys. This is heartbreaking to see. We have a ton of these bikes in Dallas and they are an eyesore and a terrible waste of resources. 

I'm going to have to try this soon: Korean bbq chickpea bento bowls

I found out about Read It Forward recently and I am loving it! So many books have been added to my amazon wishlist because of the site. 

I'm not the only one on a sock kick these days...

Bandanas!

2 recipes I tried this week and that were winners:
Thai Cashew Coconut Rice with Ginger Peanut Sauce
Raspberry Fool 

More book ideas!

And last, but very much not least, I discovered this blog today and I am OBSESSED. I want EVERYTHING she owns. Her 10x10 project is super inspiring and makes me want to try to figure out different ways of wearing my clothes. 

That's all I've got for now! I hope you all stay nice and warm and enjoy your weekend. 

weekend reading

Happy Sunday! I hope you are having a lovely weekend full of rest, relaxation, and a little bit of fun. Hopefully these links add to one, or all three, of those things. 

Is it just me or are these culottes adorable?! The breeziness of a skirt with the security of pants?! Yes, please. Might have to add these to my to-make list. 

I saw this gorgeous embroidery on reddit this week and it made me want to try to make something similar. 

Sometimes I use these weekend reading posts as a repository for things I don't want to forget. This link is just that. I know I've talked multiple times on here about this style of apron...clearly I am still thinking about it and seeking them out! 

Last week, I went to a friend's birthday dinner. This particular friend is très smart and has a love and knowledge of literature. I had told one of our mutual friends who was in attendance at the dinner that I had thought of printing off a poem and including it in her card, but I was certain she had the poem memorized or something. This friend, also très smart and very literary, thought this was a fab idea. She is also very familiar with a lot of poetry so we ended up talking about poems and poets and I wrote down some people she mentioned and sent her a recent fave of mine. I'll leave this excerpt here:
I will repeat these words until I am no longer reluctant
Until these words are a given
Until they are no longer foreign in my mouth
I will repeat these words
I have a beautiful body
I have a beautiful body
I have a beautiful body
Until ownership becomes a privilege
Until this skin becomes a perfect home
Weathered and worn over time
A perfect home
Whose walls I know well
Whose stair case
And old floors creak my favorite song
I am my own favorite song that I am just now learning all the words to
But I wanna sing you
Sing you til the song sticks
(beautiful body by natalie patterson)

I liked that poem so much, I think because it describes embodiment perfectly. This a topic I could get on a soapbox with, but I won't, so I'll just leave this Marya Hornbacher quote here: "This is it: This body is home. This is where I live and hang my hat. This is where I settle into my hips and sit easy in myself, slung together with strong muscles and bones, made gentle and forging with flesh. This body is durable, has lasted for years, hunkered down through fierce storms and allows for the peaceful erosions of age. It is like a cottage on the shore: weathered and well made, a place where a person could comfortable live. I like it here. It is my own."

I am going to Seattle in just about a week and a half. I am super excited! I think I might try out the "dance church" class at this dance studio. I've heard good things about the dance church thing, so hopefully I make myself go to one of them! 

A few weeks ago, a friend and I were having a chat and inevitably, the conversation turned toward men and dating and love and all that good (question mark) stuff. She told me about an article she read recently and I was like "damn that hurts" and then she sent it to me and I was like "DAMN THAT HURTS". So, here it is. Read at your own risk. I hope you don't related to it too much like *ahem* someone else I know. 

Over the weekend I decided it was high time to go through all the many, many opened tabs I had on Safari on my phone. Among the tabs were two songs that I had heard performed live recently but that weren't on the artists' albums, so the only way I could enjoy them was youtube. Now I shall link to them so I, and you, can enjoy them again and again. 
Bela Fleck and Brooklyn Rider, "Next"
The Brother Brothers, "Angel Island"  

Until next time!

weekend reading

Hello, dears! How is your Sunday going? 

Yesterday I had one of those days where I was mostly indoors and mostly sitting. Here's a thing about being in your late twenties (that people totally warned me about but I didn't believe them): sitting all day hurts!! It got to a point where I had been so lazy all day long that I set an alarm to get up and move around for 10 minutes. And then I thought to myself, 'if I did this every hour for 12 hours, I'd have moved for 2 hours'. I thought that sounded pretty healthy and not like I live too sedentary of a life, so I'm gonna try to make that a goal this week. I have succeeded so far today (plus I went grocery shopping, so that counted for more than 10 min right there!). I think it'll be especially useful at work, where I'm usually either sitting in therapy sessions or at my desk typing up notes. 

I went on a spring cleaning spree today. Or maybe more like spring productivity?! I've cleaned a few things (like my humidifier, which will be put away til October-ish, and my laptop, which was in desperate need of a good magic eraser-ing) and I also did some laundry, meal planned, went grocery shopping, practiced French, ran a couple of errands, and went to church. All before 3pm! 

Now onto things that are more fun than cleaning!

One of my New Year goals (I'm not really a resolutions person) was to meal plan and grocery shop on the weekends. I tend to do meal planning and prep pretty on the fly and when you're working full time that's a recipe for disaster! This week, I am going to eat some leftovers and also this Vegetarian West African Peanut Soup and Spaghetti Squash "Pizza" Bowls. Thanks, Cookie and Kate for always providing me with great vegetarian recipes!

Last night, in an effort to not sit around all day long, I texted some friends to see if they wanted to hang out. We ended up at one gal's house and we watched Coco. It was SO good! I now see what all the hype has been about. 

I am reading about a thousand books right now, but that didn't stop me from purchasing a new one this week. Heart Talk. I am expecting very good things from this one. 

I came across this knitted spa set on Instagram and fell in love. I especially like the idea of a little soap pouch! Perfect projects for the random skein of cotton yarn I have! There's something so luxurious about having hand-knit washcloths, right?!

I got behind in my French language study habit when I was doing rehab for my arm, but I am finally, FINALLY all caught back up on my lessons! I had also gotten out of the habit of listening to Coffee Break French, but I started that back up again too and I am loving it! It's such an easy listen and I have definitely improved my French by listening (and speaking along). And while we are on a French note, here's a website with lots of French reading for beginners!

A very cleverly constructed tote bag

Waaaaant.

I saw this article on multiple link round-ups throughout the week which means I have not been the only one literally under the weather. We had a long stretch of very cloudy, cold, and rainy days here in Dallas and it was starting to get to me. I am feeling more energetic and more positive these days and some of the tips in this list really helped, namely getting out of the house even if the weather wasn't great, taking vitamin D tablets, and doing yoga. 

Still contemplating this reality.

I am amazed by Erin's dedication to reducing the amount of waste she and her family produce!! I am becoming more and more aware of how disposable our culture is and am really trying to focus on sustainability. There were some new-to-me ideas in this post. 

I got a weird idea in my head this week and it required inverting the colors of a photo. Being the not-so-tech-savvy person I am, I googled it and found a great step-by-step article and I was successful in inverting the colors! 

In anticipation of seeing Tiny Ruins and Marlon Williams in a week, I have been listening to lots of their music, but especially this song

I have been thinking a lot about meditating these days and Carly's post really inspired me to be more dedicated to actually having a meditation practice. I also liked her post about journaling and I think I will start journaling a little more. I used to be religious about it, but I never looked back on anything and reflected. I feel like this past year was one of growth and progress and also confusion and writing stuff down would've been helpful, though, so maybe I'll make that a regular practice too. I am also toying around with the idea of a bullet journal-esque journal that would basically be a habit tracker and a place for my weekly happiness lists. We'll see!

I hope you all enjoy the rest of your weekend and have a great week! xoxo

weekend reading

Happy happy Friday! How was your week? I am enjoying the sunshine that is much needed after  a few weeks of rainy weather. I didn't realize how gloomy I was getting with that gloomy weather until the sun came out. I hope there is sun and a slight warmth to the air wherever you are. 

First things first: one of the most exciting parts of my week was Monday when I found out Punch Brothers are releasing a new album and will be touring in the summer. Another exciting part was Tuesday when I scored (very affordable) VIP tickets to their Dallas show!!! I am so freaking excited and will eagerly be awaiting the show in September! 

With all the grey weather, I knew I needed to start reprioritizing some ~movement~ in my life. The clouds and rain had me down and so I decided to start doing Yoga with Adriene on the reg again. I did FIVE days in a row this week which is definitely a record for me! The thing I most like about Yoga with Adriene (besides the fact I can do it at home and for free) is that she doesn't do any crazy poses and for the most part her videos are not stressful on the shoulders.

Vegetarian pot stickers!

I love a good hot bath with epsom salts, but this little mix sounds even more luxurious.

On one of those aforementioned rainy days I found this recipe and made a really delicious chai latte with it. I didn't have any dry milk so i just omitted that and made my tea with 6oz of water and 6oz of milk. I put the liquids and a black tea teabag in a saucepan and stirred in some of the mix. It was sooo good!

Do you guys suffer from secondhand embarrassment? I do. You'll know if you suffer from it too if all of these texts make you want to crawl into a hole. Super funny but the cringing is real!

Well, you guys, I did it. I have been talking about knitting socks on here a few times recently and I did indeed cast on a pair (of DK weight, nothing crazy!). I used Judy's magic cast on, and doing one-at-a-time (I've only ever done 2 at a time!), toe up with magic loop and a fish lips kiss heel, and I think I'l be trying Jenny's surprisingly stretchy bind off. #sockstuff

Idk why but I am always on the lookout for cute bandanas. I don't wear them particularly often, but I think I have this assumption that if I owned more of them that I would wear them all the time. Regardless, these are some seriously cute ones!

Brûléed! Earl Grey! Rice Pudding! Ahh! All the best things!!

This bread sounds REAL good. 

QuiltCon happened last week and I saw lots of lovely quilts on my instagram feed. I really like this one from Blair!

These painted teabags are so pretty!

Plastic-free aisle at the grocery store. I want every grocery store to do this. 

The Death of Clothing. Speaking of...I maybe might have bought a clothing item and an accessory this past weekend. I am trying not to buy any clothes this year but made the caveat of if I did, they would be secondhand, and guess what?! My purchases were secondhand! I got a really unique long sleeveless kimono cardigan type thing (I have no idea how else to describe this article of clothing!) and a backpack purse, which I had been wanting to find FOREVER. I felt good for not buying anything new and I know both will be used and loved often. Hooray secondhand!

Well, my dears, I think that's all I've got! I hope you all have a great weekend. Here's hoping you have plenty of sun and movement :) 

latest ravelry faves

I haven't done one of these posts in a while and I thought it might be nice to share some knitting inspo!

I have been alllllll about sweaters lately. I have never before favorited so many sweaters! I think it's because of a few things: first of all, ever since knitting my first sweater last year I have a new confidence in my skill set than ever before. Then there's the fact that I now own a few shawls that I love, adore, and wear regularly, so knitting ALL the shawls isn't as important to me anymore. And finally, practicality. I don't really own very many sweaters and I wish I did. They are such an easy thing to wear in winter and hello, they keep you warm. 

I have also been thinking about, very surprisingly, socks. Y'all know me and my aversions to tiny yarn and needles, but for some reason I can't get the thought of socks out of my mind. I think it might be because I have only ONE(!) wip on the needles right now. That is definitely not my norm! It has me thinking about what's next. I'd ideally like a portable project and one I could add a few rows to easily and quickly and socks are really the best for that! So who knows, maybe this is the year I actually become a sock knitter. I have a vacation coming up soon and I definitely want to take a project or two for the plane and to work on when I am crafting with my friend, so I better decide quick what's next for my needles!

Onto the faves!

Sweaters
Branches and Buds 
Denai Kimono 
Jule
Olympia. This is fingering weight so I am laughing in the face of it. It's beautiful, though!
Georgetown
Kame
Lakeland
Dane
Kennings Yoke

Socks
Midsummer socks
Joluluyöt 
I also want to knit several plain old vanilla toe-up pairs using Judy's Magic Cast On and the Fish Lips Kiss heel techniques so that I can just have it memorized and whip up a sock easily. 

Shawls
Jadis. Bulky weight! Lace! Shawl!
What the Fade
Wallace

Other random accessories
Gold medal hat
Pinwheel mitts. These are STUNNING!
So Faux Cowl. I'm not usually a leopard print person, but this just looks fun!
Bow Knot Scarf
Bittersweet Cowl
Easy Peasy Fade Cowl 

And one last thing- Wool and the Gang has a sock kit out right now that has yarn that makes its own leopard print (or cloud print) pattern as you knit! I LOVE the cloud ones.

So there you have it. All the patterns that are taking up space in my brain. I always think it's interesting to see the similarities (and lack thereof) when I look at my faves. It's looking like a simple oversized garter stitch pullover and/or cardigan is in my future- I have several of them faved! I'll be sure to update whenever I eventually cast something on!

everything you've ever needed or wanted to know about my injury (and then some)

Hey there friends! I have a bit of a different post lined up for you today. As most of you know, I was dealing with a rather debilitating injury for most of last year and I am finally, FINALLY (mostly) healed and pain free!!! It's been a wild ride and I have had a lot of questions about what was going on. So, here you have it, a whole (very long) post dedicated to my right arm. 

In January 2017 I went on a knitting spree knitting this sweet sweater. I was knitting for multiple hours a day and when I do that I tend to have some soreness, as one would expect. Around the same time, I fell into a total Instagram hole. I was just non-stop scrolling. Eventually my thumb would start hurting and I would just keep scrolling. It got to the point where my thumb was actually hurting like a lot and I started calling it "Instagram Thumb Disease." You can definitely use that term if you have ever been affected by it (and I know you all have). 

Did I rethink my priorities? Did I give myself breaks? Did I get the F off of instagram? 

NOPE.

I just carried on, scrolling away, knitting tons, playing on the computer for hours, you know the drill. It was one of those things where I knew it was a bad idea but that freakin' dopamine just kept going and I couldn't stop. Technology addiction is real, y'all. Here's the thing about your thumb, though: it connects to your elbow. Weird, right? Don't believe me? Stick your arm straight out, put your opposite fingers on the top of your elbow and move your thumb. You feel that? Yep, you do, because your thumb is in fact attached to your elbow. All of that is to say this- my thumb was no longer the only thing hurting, my forearm and elbow were hurting quite a bit too.

Finally in March or April I decided to cut back on the knitting and 'gramming some and I went to my old orthopedist who I have seen for various ailments throughout the years. I will not name drop her now because I was very unhappy with the care I got from her this time around. She basically felt around my elbow and said she didn't feel anything and told me to just take Advil. Okkkkkkkkk.

I suffered through a few more months of pain and would occasionally knit a bit and would INSTANTLY have sharp pain in my forearm and elbow. Throughout this entire injury my arm was just so so tight and I couldn't get it to relax. I would go through periods of not doing anything- no crafts, go scrolling on my phone or computer- and the tightness would persist. I was constantly aware of my forearm and that's not something most people are aware of at all times. 

In June I went to a hand specialist. He specializes mostly in carpal tunnel and I had seen him a few years ago when I had a bit of tennis elbow from typing a lot, knitting a lot, and holding babies all the time while I was nannying. He told me that my symptoms were consistent with radial tunnel syndrome which is basically carpal tunnel syndrome but on the top part of your arm instead of the bottom part. He gave me a cortisone shot and a brace that I had to wear until the soreness from the shot went away and then every night while I slept. 

 Day of my first cortisone shot, Garfield bandaid and all.

Day of my first cortisone shot, Garfield bandaid and all.

Apparently some people have a reaction to a cortisone shot called a "cortisone flare". I am one of those people. For me, the pain and soreness significantly increased after the injection and continued for about 72 hours. And then like magic, after 72 hours everything felt mostly normal. I thought I was cured!

Reader, I was not cured.

I had about a 75% reduction in pain. That's not nothing but I still was experiencing significant pain when knitting, and really, all I care about in life is being able to knit (and a few other things). About 2 months after the initial injection, I went back to the specialist and he said that he was pretty sure the last 25% was due to tennis elbow and he gave me another cortisone injection. I had another cortisone flare but this time, nothing else happened. The pain from the injection went away but the pain from the tennis elbow did not. I was discouraged at this point because I was about to go to Stitches Texas and I needed to be able to knit for 3 hours at a time and I definitely wasn't going to be able to do that. 

 Back in the brace :(

Back in the brace :(

September and Stitches Texas came around and I decided to go because I had spent a lot of money to be there. I went to my first class, continental knitting, and was seated next to someone who just happened to be a physical therapist! I told her about my poor elbow and she told me to start taking anti-inflammatories every day, ice for 5 mins a day, and do cross fiber massage. It really did help and it got me through my classes at Stitches with little to no pain! But after doing that for a few weeks, I kinda hit a plateau and was still having tightness and pain. 

At my wits end, I finally decided to look into this place that a few friends had told me about many months ago, Airrosti. All I had heard about them at this point was that they were "soft tissue specialists". I did all the paperwork online and someone called to set up an appointment almost instantly (even though it was the weekend!). A few days later, in October, I was at an Airrosti clinic (there are tons of them) and had my first treatment.

What exactly does this treatment look like, you ask? You spend 30 min with the doctor who does this massage type thing and then 15-20 min with the physical therapist. The first 30 min are...interesting. Since my injury was my arm, I'd lay on this table and the doctor would just rub my arm really hard for 30 min. this ain't your relaxing-by-the-pool-on-vacation type massage, my friends. this is a I-have-to-stop-talking-to-breathe-through-the-pain type "massage". I bruised every time. 

Sounds fun, right?! But in all seriousness, both of my doctors and my physical therapist were wonderful and we had good convos that really helped make the time go by. One of my friends who has also been to Airrosti says she thinks part of the training is in having good convos and I bet she's right! 

After the "massage" they send you over to the physical therapist who gives you exercises to do. For my arm, my exercises included a theraband, lacrosse ball, rubber band, and a wall ha! They also tape you up with kinesiotape. After my arm treatment was over, I asked to keep coming to work on my shoulders too, so we added a foam roller into the mix. I now understand why people have love/hate relationships with foam rollers. While I'm using it, I curse the day it was invented, but afterward I feel amazing!

 Blue tape after my first treatment.

Blue tape after my first treatment.

 Pink tape after my second treatment. You can see some bruising on my tricep on the top left. 

Pink tape after my second treatment. You can see some bruising on my tricep on the top left. 

 More tricep bruising.

More tricep bruising.

 Probably the worst bruising I experienced the whole time. I was really thankful to have the tape to cover it most of the time!

Probably the worst bruising I experienced the whole time. I was really thankful to have the tape to cover it most of the time!

 More bruises and purple tape.

More bruises and purple tape.

While in treatment, you do your physical therapy exercises at home everyday 2x/day and ice for 20 mins after. I had a really elaborate ice setup and I honestly kinda looked forward to it! Most people have their injuries resolved in THREE VISITS! I did 5 sessions for my arm and I think like 6 sessions for both shoulders combined. While in treatment, you are encouraged to keep doing all of your activities as long as they don't cause pain. This meant I could do some knitting and I was going to yoga regularly at this time too. By Thanksgiving, I was done with treatment. 

 Ice time!

Ice time!

So, I have been out of treatment for 3 months now and I am still feeling great! I keep up with my physical therapy exercises- at first I did them once a day and iced if I had a lot of soreness, then I was able to drop down to every other day, and at this point I'm typically doing the exercises twice/week. I am able to knit for several hours at a time now with no pain at all and typically without any soreness even! I truly thought that I might never knit pain free again, so I am totally thrilled with my results and even more thrilled when I chill out and knit! Since treatment, I have finished 3 projects, more than I have finished in a very long time. I am so grateful to my team at Airrosti and I recommend them 1000%! If you have any questions about my injury, treatment, or recovery, please feel free to ask. 

And, let this be a reminder to us all to not overdo things. You don't want to be in pain for nearly a year, my friends. It's not worth it. Be kind to yourself. 

weekend reading

Weekend reading: short edition. I didn't see a ton on the web this week, but what I did see was good!

Let's just get into it.

Good foods, bad foods, and eating cookies at breakfast. I loved this post! Kylie is so relatable and has such an inclusive view of all foods, which I love. A peanut butter cookie and eggs DOES sound like a filling and satisfying breakfast. 

I'm thinking about dress sewing lately and I keep coming back to really similar ideas. This is one of them. This is the other. They're essentially the exact same, one is just sleeveless. Perhaps this will be a thing soon. I have had this pattern on my mind and have seen sleeved and sleeveless iterations of it on instagram, sooooo I feel like this is just an inevitability in my life!

Yesterday I went to Target to pick up a few toiletries and a birthday gift for a friend. I ended up getting distracted by a new beauty brand they are carrying and spent at least 5 minutes smelling all the perfumes. I really liked this Brainiac scent and this Rustic Woods scent. I sprayed the Brainiac on and I could still smell it when I went to bed! Might have to add these to my collection soon. I am super picky about perfumes, so when I find one I like it is rare!

Dramatically switching gears here: let's talk about student loans. Earlier this month I had to send in an application for my income-based repayment plan to be renewed and let's just say it ended in tears. I find my student loan debt to be completely overwhelming and guilt-filled. It is a huge number and I often wonder if I will ever be able to pay it off. I am so grateful for my education and everything it has allowed me to do, but the debt it comes with is crippling and terrifying. I read this article this week and dreamed of being debt free. Maybe one day!

And just so we don't end on that depressing note, Last Week Tonight with John Oliver is back tonight! I missed eating breakfast on Monday mornings while I watched his show. I'm happy I'll get to be back in that routine!

I hope you all enjoy your Sunday!

simpatico wrap: a finished object

Y'all! Another finished object! It's been exciting times around here. 

So let's see, how to tell the story of this one? I don't remember exactly when I stumbled upon the Simpatico Wrap, but I know when I did, I was enchanted by its simplicity. I have an affinity for things that are basically wearable blankets and this one definitely fits into that category. I thought about it for a long while, knowing that I would need to find some truly perfect yarns for it, so I would just look at it on Ravelry every once in a while, dreaming of the day when I would find the perfect yarn match. 

Enter the 2017 DFW Fiber Fest in April. I went and explored and found a great solid Madeline Tosh and a speckled Hedgehog Fibres. The only problem? The vendor I bought the Hedgehog from didn't have the colorway I liked in a sock weight. I found 2 skeins of a DK weight and decided to just go with it and got 2 skeins of a DK Madeline Tosh as well. I almost immediately cast on. This was back in my injured arm days (I swear I really will post about this soon), so things were slow going, even though this is a super simple project.

My Hedgehog yarns, being hand-dyed, had some variations in the speckles and I had a hard time deciding which one to cast on with. I ended up ripping out and casting this one on several times! At one point I was alternating skeins but my stranded edge was getting too tight, so I ripped once more and in August I finally decided to just knit with one skein and then switch when I ran out. The variation in the speckling in noticeable only to me, I am sure. 

Soon after, I started treatment for my injury and was able to knit for long stretches again. I finished some other projects and then dedicated all of my energy to Simpatico! It is a very easy knit and it's so fun to see it increasing and then decreasing. This thing was quite the behemoth to block, but it definitely needed it. Mine ended up quite large- 48" square- but I love it and it is so cozy! I am so happy I decided to do DK weight. It's the perfect weight for me. My most-worn wrap is worsted weight, and while I love my sock-weight shawls and they are gorgeous, they just aren't the same as snuggling up in a swath of DK or worsted. This is the perfect project to use some of those special skeins of yarn that you love to look at and pet but aren't quite sure what to do with. It's an excellent showcase and use of a fave!

All the photos!

Specs!
Yarn: Hedgehog Fibers Merino DK in Monet, Madeline Tosh DK Twist in Uma's Thurman (obsessed with the name...unfortunately it's not on the Mad Tosh site), 2 skeins each
Pattern: Simpatico Wrap by Kristine Vejar 
Needle: size 9 Chiaogoo circulars, prob 40" length
I have no idea how many stitches I ended up with at the longest point...I knit with the Hedgehog first since it had less yardage than the Mad Tosh and I knit with it until I was no longer confident that I could get another row with it :) Prob a few hundred stitches. 
Ravelry link
Started April 9, 2017, ripped out several times, started for real in August 2017
Finished February 2, 2018. 

weekend reading

Happy Sunday! How has your weekend been? Have you moved at all from the couch or have you been glued to it, watching the Olympics, like me?! I have always liked the Olympics but my zest for watching didn't start til 2012, when I was nannying infant twins and was relegated to the couch for much of the day. Ever since, I have figured out my favorite events, found the schedule online, and recorded and watched. Right now I'm really digging slopestyle, ski jump, and pretty much anything else that happens on skis or snowboards. 

Even with all the Olympic watching, I have found time to read and find links to share :) 

I really love the blog This Handmade Life and this week, its author perfectly summed up exactly how I feel when inspiration strikes. I also have been craving crepes lately, so we are alike in that way as well. 

I'm not a huge magazine reader, but there are a few I really enjoy. I renewed my subscription to Making this week and added a subscription to Taproot. I am also a perpetual subscriber to Mollie Makes. I am sure to be inspired this year!

20 Netflix docs to watch and where to watch Oscar-nominated movies

Renovated RVs and little trailer homes are popping up all over my feeds recently and now I kinda want to live in one. Case in point

Blue moon milk. So the ingredients aren't "i'm just going to run to the store for this stuff real quick" types, but it sure is pretty. 

This had me snort-laughing out loud. 

Absolutely in love with this caption

I'm not a big journaler, nor do I have a bullet journal, but this page is rather convincing. 

Spaghetti squash "pizza" bowls. Yum!!

Next month it will finally be my turn to pick out the next book for my book club to read! I have been doing lots of searching for a good book to pick and I am very, very tempted to choose this one

Essential oil things: a really beautifully scented blend for relaxation/sleep, beautiful containers, and some inspiration for my own blends

My sister and I did some researching and bought some products from The Ordinary. I CANNOT WAIT to get mine in. I told one of my besties that I am envisioning 2 very different outcomes- either I start using these products and have model-like beautiful glowing perfect skin, OR my entire face falls off. That's it. there's no inbetween. Let's hope it's the former. I ended up buying the lactic acid 5% with HA, the niacinamide 10% and zinc 1%, the natural moisturizing factors with HA, the squalane, and the high adherence silicone primer.

Last week, I was hanging out with one of my best friends and she mentioned that later in the week, I would have a surprise. I asked all sorts of questions about it, wanting to be somewhat prepared, and could not figure out at all what I might be. Yesterday, as I was sitting around, watching the Olympics, a package arrived on my front step. What?! I hadn't considered this possibility. When I opened it, there was another box inside and it said "Happy Galentine's Day" and I immediately was overcome with happiness. If you don't watch Parks and Rec, you are seriously missing out, if only because you don't understand the fun of Galentine's Day. For the uninitiated, my friend had sent a package full of love and compliments. It's pretty much the best. Katie, you're a true Leslie Knope and a beautiful rule-breaking moth. 

I hope you all enjoy the rest of your weekends. I took tomorrow off and I am just thrilled! Hopefully I spend the rest of today and all of tomorrow wisely and not glued to the Olympics...might be wishful thinking! 

weekend reading

Welcome to Sunday. I hope this morning finds you content and rested and ready for a quiet day. At least, that's my hope for myself! 

Yesterday I was quite busy- hiking with friends at Cedar Ridge Preserve in the morning, then a delicious vegetarian lunch at Cosmic Cafe, followed up with some tea and being surrounded by books at Wild Detectives, then a quick jaunt home to look slightly more presentable, a dinner at a sushi restaurant (with PERFECT tofu), and finally, finally, some time at home with the fam. 

And how could I forget?! I started the day bathing and blocking yet another FO!! I finished up my Simpatico Wrap on Friday and got it all ready to wear yesterday. I'm looking forward to cozying up in it! It came out very, very large, so it doubles as a blanket! I'm itching to knit up a pair of socks (WHO AM I) so we will see if I end up casting on a pair soon. I'll have a post with Simpatico details soon. 

Now, onto the links!

I love this simple little star mani! I'm giving my nails a break right now after they've been suffocating under a gel mani for a few weeks, but I think I'll try this mani out soon. 

Have I ever talked here about my love for the podcast Call Your Girlfriend?! If not, a quick rundown: it's "a podcast for long-distance besties everywhere" and it is essentially and hour-long convo between bffs Ann Friedman and Aminatou Sow. I have been listening for a few years and I credit it with keeping me woke, making me crave slushies in the summer, and for giving me excellent book recs. Ann is a journalist and she recently wrote a great article about not turning everything into a side hustle and I really resonated with it. Let people have their hobbies!

I, like many others, have been following along with the annual Fringe and Friends Knitalong and this year's logalong has been a delight to watch. Karen recently posted about an artist, Margo Selby, who does some log cabin work and OMG. I am SO inspired. As a part of the knitalong, Karen drafted up a seriously cute pair of fingerless mitts and yes, these are going on my to-knit list as well. I'm loving the all-grey ones.

Winter Lemonade with Ginger and Cloves. Ok. Yes. You don't have to tell me twice. 

Some tips from State the Label for building a more ethical wardrobe

This article popped up multiple times in the last few weeks for good reason. 

Setting deliberate making goals. Yes. I want to be a more conscious consumer as well as a more conscious maker. 

I really liked this post about self-care. 

Last Valentine's Day, I hung out with one of my best friends. Her husband was out of town on a work trip, so we had ourselves a little Galentine's Day. We went to dinner and watched a really, really sad movie. We also lit candles, you know, for a romantic ambience. It was then that I confessed this to my dear friend: I have long been terrified of matches and did not know how to properly light one. Completely without judgment, she taught me how to light a match without lighting my fingers on fire. I have been on a roll ever since and no longer fear matches and in fact prefer them to those ugly plastic lighters. I now own a box of matches and my only complaint is that the box is a little...well...ugly. This post inspired me to bust out some fabric scraps and my little sticker maker and make the box a little more pleasant to look at. It's the little things. These would make a really sweet gift as well!

It is a truth universally acknowledged that chocolate and peanut butter are the perfect pairing. I say this with conviction, having just finished a bowl of chocolate peanut butter Cheerios (if you haven't tried these yet, add them to your grocery list. They do not disappoint.). These cookies, then, are bound to be utter perfection. 

With that, I leave you to your Sunday. Spend it well, my friends. 

weekend reading

bon dimanche à tous!

I hope you are having a wonderful weekend. Mine has been filled with knitting, seeing Phantom Thread (definitely recommend), and a lot of dancing at a 70s themed birthday party. Tonight I'll be seeing Brooklyn Rider and Béla Fleck and I am thrilled! I've seen both before but not together and I think it's going to be such a treat. 

Feeling down about your finances? Check this out and suddenly you'll feel very rich. 

A couple of years ago, I read When Breath Becomes Air and was incredibly moved by it. This article about the late author's widow is beautiful and full of hope.

5 ways to build a more ethical closet. I NEVER think of going to second-hand stores when I buy clothes, but this is the year that I will finally do that. Like I've said here recently, I'm going to try not to shop this year but there are definitely a few things that are lacking in my wardrobe (namely, dress pants that actually cover my ankles) so I think I will end up buying a few articles of clothing this year. I'll be sure to go second-hand!

Tis the season for unbearably dry skin. This homemade calendula salve sounds so luxurious and soothing. 

In 2013, I used to work at a specialty fabric shop. I loved working there! We eventually hired a store manager and she used to wear all sorts of fabulous smocks and aprons and I will always remember her Japanese-style aprons. They looked so chic while serving a functional purpose. Ever since, I have wanted one, and I think I have finally found the perfect pattern

While on the hunt for the above apron pattern, I stumbled across this beautiful etsy shop. I want EVERYTHING in it. I'm finding lots of inspiration for simple handmade clothes amongst all the designs. I'm especially fond of this.

I hope you all have a great Sunday and a wonderful week. xoxo.

weekend reading

joyeux vendredi, mes amis! 

how was your week? what goals are you making for the new year? i'm not really a resolutions person but i do have some goals. i pretty much just want to consume less...spend less money in general and use what i have. i believe i have bought only ONE article of clothing since this summer which is shocking to me but has also been very easy. i'm hoping to continue that and also hoping to replace any clothes shopping with garment sewing instead. i'd also really like to read all the books i own instead of buying new ones this year. and just stay on top of my daily routines that i enjoy so much: writing in my gratitude journal every night, staying on top of notes and hour logs at work, reading poetry every day, practicing french, using the internet less. 

i have a few links to share!

My Year of No Shopping. Fitting, right?! 

Sabotaging Big Days. Oh did this speak to me. As someone who tends to have crazy high expectations for holidays, I sometimes need the reminder that a holiday or a birthday can be just a normal day and doesn't have to be extravagant or The Best Day Ever. Taking the pressure off really helps!

White Christianity is in Big Trouble. YES. 

Y'all know i love buzzfeed quizzes and this one was really fun and pretty informative! 

Questions to reflect on the year past. 

Our Year in Poems

With it being so cold lately I have been taking loads of baths. I usually don't even turn on the cold water! I just steam up the bathroom and soak and warm up all the way to my bones. Earlier this week I threw in a bath bomb that I had been saving and it was so delightful! I want more bath bombs in my life in 2018. My friend Tania shared this post about how to DIY bath bombs and I definitely see myself enjoying lots of baths and bath bombs in my future!

My book club met in December and we read The Power. It was SO GOOD and thought-provoking and disturbing. A very good read. Next up, we are reading What Happened

Lately I have been listening to the gorgeous sounds of Cécile McLorin Salvant and you should too. 

i hope you all have a great weekend!

fragment scarf: a finished object

Yes, you're reading that correctly...another finished object! I told you I was hoping to have one very soon. 

A few weeks ago I was perusing Instagram (doesn't it feel like most of my stories start off this way?) and I saw this post. I loved the little bandana scarf in the photo and I thought it would make a great Christmas present for one of my best friends. 

Here's a thing about me: I rarely ever knit for other people. It just doesn't happen. Do you know how much knitting costs?! Or how much time a project takes?! I make things for only the people that I know will truly appreciate and use what I make for them (and who will properly take care of it!). All of that is to say that this friend is a good one and she is deserving of a hand knit :) 

The Fragment Scarf knit up super quickly and towards the end I was able to do the 10-row repeat a few times in one sitting because the decreases made everything faster and faster every single row. The only modification I made was that I did not do the last 4 rows because I 1. hate picking up stitches, and 2. was really worried I wasn't going to have enough yarn to finish. The pattern calls for 163 yds and my skein had...163 yds!!! I used Plymouth Cuzco Cashmere yarn and it was suuuuuuuch a pleasure to work with. It's 40% silk, 40% alpaca, and 20% cashmere and is an absolute dream. I would absolutely knit with it again for a small project (it's pretty expensive per gram). I recently bought some unscented Eucalan for washing and blocking my knits and this was the first project I used that on. It worked great! 

I knit up this project so quickly that I only took 1 in-progress photo of it! That is really saying something about how quick and easy it is! I really want to make it in a worsted weight yarn on slightly bigger needles to make an extra cozy version. 

Specs:
Fragment Scarf pattern
Plymouth Yarn Cuzco Cashmere bought at Fleece 
Size 6 needle
Ravelry link.
Started on December 9, 2017.
Finished on December 25, 2017.