Monday Runday

I really love running. I run slower than a herd of turtles stampeding through peanut butter, but I love it. But I haven’t been doing it. I haven’t been taking very good care of myself lately, but I’m putting a stop to that nonsense. And a (re)start to my running career.

Last week I went to the doctor. With a sideways glance she deemed me an unreasonably healthy fat woman. She’s doing bloodwork to check a few things like my vitamin D, but everything else looks good. That tentative stamp of good health and one other little thing convinced me to start running again.

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Rainloverknits has put together a virtual 5K for all of us fibery folks. It’s the Woolly Trot 5K! I am super excited about this. She’s even sent out a couch to 5K training program for us all to use. If you are a rank beginner you can ease into running with this program. Trust me, if it works for me it will for anyone. This is how I started running and how I will do it again!

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This morning after I took the boys to 6:30 am workouts I headed to the bike path. It was dark. It was raining. The rain didn’t bother me but I wasn’t real happy about the dark. So I downloaded the mapmyrun app in the ole minivan and waited for the sun to start to come up!

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I did my run/walk thing through the nice quiet path. I didn’t see anyone this morning – I blame the rain – wusses! But I said hello to the cows in the pasture. And I really just felt proud of myself. For getting out there and doing it again. I always feel so good after a run – even if like today I only technically ran for 8 minutes of the total time. I have to remember that good feeling when I don’t want to lace up my running shoes the next time!

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The mapmyrun app is nifty. It uses GPS to measure your total distance, and gives you your time and your splits. Do you know what a split is? It’s your pace per mile for each mile in the run. Miles 1 and 2 I was doing walking and running. Mile 3 I just walked. So sad that I can walk faster than I can run. But hey – it’s a beginning!

Do you want to start running? Or are you already running and need some motivation? The Woolly Trot 5K fundraiser is still going – she’s reached her goal, but you can still use it to register and get swag until April 5th. The t-shirts will be awesome tech shirts and I’m a sponsor so my logo will be on your back somewhere. You know you want one! There is also a Woolly Trot 5K group on Ravelry and we are discussing training already! Come join us!

Happy New Year!

This year one of my resolutions is to not be so scarce around these parts. Among lots and lots of other things! I am going to be one of those annoying people who proclaims 2015 to by MY YEAR – a lot because 2014 sucked big time. I was going to use another colorful phrase, but I’m trying to be couth here.

Today my husband decided that the thing that we must do today is plant a tree. So we did. We headed up to home depot to see what they had in stock for winter planting and the pickings were slim. Most of the options were citrus trees. And while I would love to have a lime or lemon tree, that’s a backyard tree. I don’t want the neighbors or the HOA complaining if my harvest gets out of hand. And today I wanted a front yard tree.

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So we chose this lovely magnolia tree. And of course now I feel like I need to be all gentile and possibly sit on the porch with a hat or something. But then I remember that I don’t have a porch on my house that is quite possibly the bain of the neighborhood with it’s Hershey chocolate exterior. And the only hat I own that isn’t knitted is a ginormous lime green beach hat that clashes with said house.  I adore living in the South, but I don’t have any illusions about actually being Southern!

There are lots of things in store with my business and my life and I hope y’all will come along for the ride this year. My year.

Washi Madness

I have a problem. A washi problem. It started out innocently enough. I was in Staples getting some supplies for my arc notebook and some Staedtler pens, and I saw the tapes. I’ve heard about them of course. But these were on clearance so I picked up 4 of them.


I thought a solid would be nice, a few simple patterns I could still write on, and then a fancy one for edging papers. I put them in my little batman bowl with my extra arc disks and used them a couple of times. But then things got out of hand. In the last week or so this happened…

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Yeah, yeah, yeah, I know. In my defense a lot of this was on clearance at Staples. The dispenser I found at Jo-Ann’s and ended up paying only $8 for it instead of $25 (I had a really good coupon) – it rotates AND has little tape cutting edges. And Office Depot now has this massive display with all kinds of cute tapes like the bees or the robots or the bicycles.

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So far I think my favorite tape is the flame tape. It’s perfect for those super important tasks and easy to write on with Sharpie fine point markers. So yes, I have a washi problem. But on the bright side the dispenser is now full and I refuse to buy anymore. And there will be no more dispensers. I think. Maybe.

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But you know what? All these little brightly colored to-do reminders and fancy planner pages seem to be helping. I’ve gotten more done this week than I have in ages. Does washi madness = genius? Maybe so!


Artsy Break Time!

So I’m cleaning the entire house today for a couple of reasons. Reason number one is that it is super, super overdue. Reason number two (the real reason) is that my older son is having friends over tomorrow to work on a religion project and I don’t want to embarrass him!

But I needed a break. Baseboards and vacuuming and it’s nearly time to scrub the toilets!

I’ve been trying to do non-knitting things to help relieve stress – because once knitting becomes your job and everything is on a deadline it’s not nearly as relaxing, and also I am trying to do other motions with my hands to help relieve the repetitive physical stress that comes from knitting constantly.

Today I made myself a new little arc notebook for my drawings and doodles. I’m finding that I really like working with paper that isn’t white or cream or off white or well you know… So I had picked up this handy dandy notebook at my favorite local art store and I promptly ripped its guts out!

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And then I used my fiskars paper trimmer to take off the edgings, and cut the pieces in half. This notebook had 5.5 x 8.5 inch pages. Once trimmed and cut in half they were the perfect size to put into my mini arc. I set up my arc punch and punched holes for the mini size – I had to experiment a bit.

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And now I have a perfect purse sized doodle book to carry around with me. And the “toned tan” paper looks lovely with all of my Sakura Micron pens and my Sakura Gelly Roll pen in white. I might even pick up some more gelly rolls for more fun colors.

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I think I might try to recreate this lovely cover design as a little doodle inside. It looks all zen and mandala-like!

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And now it’s time to scrub the toilets. I have two teenage sons. And husbands are just as bad. Say a prayer for me.

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!


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.


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.


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!