Going Back To Cali

I have an unreasonable love for LL Cool J. Like I actually enjoyed seeing him in that stupid Best Buy Christmas commercial. And I watched ‘Last Holiday’ the other day mostly for him.  My teenage sons are embarrassed by it. But you’ll forgive me if I quote him as I break my radio silence, won’t you?

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Did you know you can follow me on Instagram? Where I post amazing pics like the above!

Life has been good but full of all the things. I’m working on the book, and another new huge secret project, and I’m knitting so much I’ve been buying Ben Gay and KT Tape for my aching wrists and forearms. Teenage boys keep growing – in fact my 14 year old needed new uniform pants – again – because he had 2 inches of ankle showing after Christmas break.

I’m off for my 2nd trip to California come Thursday. This time it’s San Diego. Not sure how much I will see as the TNNA trade show is always very busy, but it will be fabulous to see my designing  and yarn friends in real life and working the show will be a break from all the knit design work I’ve been doing lately. Although of course I’m bringing projects with me!

In other news I am the featured designer in the spring issue of Knitscene. This was the hugest honor and I’m really proud of the spring collection that I put together with some of my very favorite yarns. I’m gonna do a blog post for each piece but you can see the patterns by going to my Ravelry page – here. There’s also an interview with me in the magazine – it’s always fascinating to me to see how I come across to folks. So much fun and such an honor!

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Hope your holidays were wonderful and that you didn’t work as much as I did! Watch this space for blog posts on each of my Spring Knitscene designs!

I think I found it!

My Christmas spirit that is! It was simple things really. Yesterday I think I put about 200 miles on my minivan. Seriously. So many trips back and forth to both of the boys’ schools. One had cross country, one had tutoring, one needed money dropped off so they could go to the basketball game, one needed dinner and a boy scout uniform… and so it goes. And I was so very grumpy.

Some of my extra trips were because my youngest son *really* wanted to stay up at his school to help wrap presents. These presents were for a needy family. I didn’t have time to stay and help because of all the running, but he really wanted to stay. Which worked on this hard ole heart not just a little bit. I felt kind of like the grinch, my heart started to grow a couple of sizes.

And then I dropped off dinner for a friend who had surgery (she’s all good thanks for asking) and her family was so grateful. And I think that’s when my heart really grew. Because I’m sitting here stressing about deadlines and finances and what to buy the boys and that’s not what it’s all about. At all.

So I think I’m going to sit my little family down this week and talk about what we can do for others for Christmas. Because when push comes to shove we have everything we need and a lot of things we want. It’s time to give back a little more. And keep this heart the size it’s supposed to be.

And so I share with you (yes again) my most favorite Christmas song. Hope you enjoy it!

December Denial

It is not December. It cannot be. I am not prepared in any way, shape, or form for it to be December. Christmas shopping? Bah! I don’t even have a list started yet! Project deadlines? Somehow I’m doing ok on those, but I did hire an army of sample knitters.

This whole short holiday season is not helping with my bah-humbuggery. I really got nothing. I watched this viral Drummer Boy video that they swore would get you in the spirit. Nothing. I haven’t listened to any of my favorite Christmas albums. Not a one.

I haven’t even put up my tree.

This is a big one. When I was a kid my mom liked to wait until very close to Christmas – sometimes the week before – to put up our Christmas tree. I hated it. And I swore when I was on my own that my tree would go up on the day after Thanksgiving no matter what.

And now it’s how many days past Thanksgiving? Yikes.

I’m trying to get in the spirit. I really am. But I have so much work to do that it’s difficult. Maybe I should just put those albums on and wait for them to work their magic.

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So what do you do to get in the holiday mood? I have kids (teenagers but kids just the same) so it’s not like I can take this grumpy mood and run with it and skip Christmas. I need some holiday cheer!

Lost Days

Well I didn’t make it the month blogging. But life goes on. Actually life rushes on with all its fun madness. Well some fun. Actually Trunk or Treat was a roaring a success and a ton of fun! But before and after that has been a lot of sickness in the house. Which hasn’t been fun at all. Especially when it’s me. I have a tendency to want to go 100mph even when I’m sick, and it’s just not working. You just end doing things like falling asleep in your minivan during cross country practice when you are supposed to be knitting – this actually happened. And I drooled.  But like I said, life goes on.

The 6th sheep is late, but the e-book subscribers got a little tide over. If you are an e-book subscriber and didn’t receive the message, please e-mail me and we’ll get you sorted. I’m doing the last edging stitches this morning and it should be ready tomorrow.

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And while I don’t want to be wishing my life away, I’m ready for November. I’m hoping it’s a little quieter, a little healthier, a little easier. And a lot more productive!

And just until the 6th Sheep is released, I’m having a little BOGO sale on everything. That’s buy one get one free y’all. Me being quiet this last week – everywhere, not just this blog – has resulted in other things quieting down, and this business has got to keep going. The sale will only last about a day and a half, and you can use the code “november” in my store to take advantage. Here’s looking forward to November!

Almost Wordless Again.

It was the playoffs for our school’s basketball team, so the boys and I went to cheer. Our guys lost, but it was good for us to go. We had a good time, and a fun dinner out with friends. Other than that, it’s been one of those days. I mean honestly, how many Mondays can one week have? So I went back to the very beginning of my flickr stream to find something to make me smile.

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Sweet boys – ages 7 & 8 if I remember right – under a knitted Block Blankie. Pretending to sleep obviously – the clue is the bunny ears!

Nearly Wordless Tuesday?

I had great intentions to post a tutorial on the crochet loop bind-off, but the day got away from me! So tomorrow  I will do Tutorial Wednesday. I know, know, it doesn’t have the same ring to it, but it will be a good tute!

So today I will post a picture that makes me happy, so I don’t break my blogging streak! This is my very handsome son on the far left for his Homecoming dance this past Saturday night! Such a good group of kids!

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Run mama run!

Too. Much. Running. Around.

Started this morning by reporting to church at 8am for Parish Beautification Day. Little dude and I left at 9 to go to his football game. Came back, finished feeding the hungry workers, and then high-tailed it home to clean up. Saw a sort of unsatisfactory zombie parade, had an amazing dinner at the The Burrito Gallery, and now I’m home seriously considering going to bed before 8pm.

Me and my guys on the way to see zombies (driving husband not pictured!)

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Beautiful architecture on the church downtown where we watched the zombies walk by.

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Not much knitting content on here lately, but honestly not much knitting. I feel like I’m just barely making it through the days of family life without falling off the boat! Hope you are having a wonderful weekend!

 

Photo Friday

These are things I thought worthy of iPhone pics in the last week. Kind of weird to be cataloging my life this way, but I guess this is how it’s done now.

Reporting for Disney at 5:30 – my oldest son there of course.

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Mickey sprinkles!

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My group that I helped chaperone!

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Neat gate detail at The Haunted Mansion. Possible knitting motif? Hmmm…

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Waiting for the ferry – my baby there at the bottom right & my oldest the tall one with the black hat.

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Iced coffee to recover from Disney!

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Trying to pick a yarn, although I kind of think the colors look good together.

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I am the ice cream woman. Coo-coo-ka-choo.

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That’ll work, right? Part of my crazy knitdesign process.

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Somebody awesome got an IK cover!

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Where I always want to be!

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And finally there! (You would not believe how many surfers I saw and it was chilly!)

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How was your week?

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Yesterday was a very good day. Despite the fact that I didn’t get to chaperone my own kids, I got to spend the day with a wonderful family, and three other neat kids. It was kind of cool seeing Disney through younger girls’ eyes. I’m so used to the jaded teenage boy perspective!

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See those bags? That’s the problem – I am useless today. I am trying to supervise some catch-up work for both boys in their English classes. Language Arts? Not my forte! Three hours of sleep on Friday night, combined with a 4:30 am wakeup call on Saturday and not actually crawling back into my bed until 2:30 am on Sunday morning? This woman is feeling her age and isn’t very helpful!

I am actually making coffee right now and I rarely drink it at all anymore. But if I don’t I will be snoozing at the kitchen table while my boys play on their phones instead of do their English re-writes and notecards!

Knitting wise I’m still plugging along on the autumn colored lace piece. I’m finally deep into the lace edging, but it’s slow going. I also have some swatches that need finishing for another project so I’m trying to convince myself that short and sweet projects like swatches are the way to go. What’s on your needles on this sleepy Sunday?

No, I appreciate you!

One of my favorite things to do, especially when a Friday is acting like a Monday, is to look at my user activity on Ravelry. It’s this sweet little place where I can see what how folks on Ravelry interact with my patterns. I get to see queues and favorites and the things I love most – project pictures and finished objects. When I looked today, I was reminded that someone said this about my Longfellow pattern: “This is probably the prettiest thing I’ve ever knit, with the prettiest yarn I’ve ever used.’

It’s one of the nicest compliments I’ve ever received.

So to share the love, I’ve got a little appreciation for you – my awesome customers! If you buy anything today or tomorrow, you can get a free pattern! Basically pick something you want from my store, and then choose a pattern you want for free. Add it all to your Ravelry cart – and then add the coupon code “appreciation”. It will take $6 (the going rate for my singles) right off your total! You could even make Longfellow one of your choices, one of the Seven Sonnets.

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Coupon code is good today and tomorrow, so get on it! And I’m happy to say that tomorrow will be nothing like a Monday because I get to spend my day at the happiest place on earth. My sons are altar servers at church and it’s Disney field trip day and I’m going along as a chaperone. Hopefully I’ll get to exert some chaperone muscle and ride my very favorite – the Haunted Mansion! What’s your favorite amusement park ride?