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Knit on with confidence through all crises

The title of this post is an Elizabeth Zimmerman quote. She was an amazing knitter, one who inspires me in design - but she also had some great insights into life in general, through knitting.

In times of trauma or stress, sometimes having a simple, creative task can calm and relax you. An attainable goal - cover this 3/4 by 12 inch space with an even layer of metallic paint - can make whatever seemingly insurmountable thing lies before you seem a little less daunting.

A sense of community is a comfort, as well. To build something together, even if you don't necessarily talk about your common struggle, strengthens your bond. You can share emotion through seemingly unrelated discussion. Helping someone create order out of chaos - or a frame from a collection of uncut boards - can calm inner turmoil.

So many things leave a mark on us, and every mark is a memory. Physical scars can remind us of injury, but they can also remind us of the service someone performed for us when we were unable to help ourselves. Emotion-charged memories may be painful at the beginning, but grow to become precious at a later time.

The sun eventually sets on every life, but until it sets on ours, we need to make the most of every sunrise. We need to remember those we love while they're still in our lives, to build relationships as we build projects together, and to seek God with such focus when things are going well that He is instinctively the first One we turn to in times of need.


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31 Days of Unraveling Designs

It's that time of year again... the 31 Days writing challenge starts today! Bloggers from all over will be writing every day of the month of October on the topic of their choosing. This will be my fourth year participating - the first year I did 7 for 31, and spent a month going through Jen Hatmaker's book 7. The second year I did 31 Days of Sustainable Dwelling, and wrote about local and fair trade living. Last year I was busy but still wanted to participate, so I went the easy route with 31 Days of Everyday Beautiful.

This year I'm diving into my greatest passion: knitting! I'll spend this month looking at past designs and talking about the inspiration behind them, so there will be plenty of regular life mixed in with the stitching - and there may be discount codes for the patterns that I write about. You'll just have to read and see!

Pattern index:

Pageturner Mitts
Hogwarts House Tie
Urban Artemis
Graffiti for Humanity
Love Out Loud
Strange Jacket


In order to change your knitting, you must first change yourself. I've lost track of how many times I've said that, or how many people I've said it to. Frustrated new knitters wondering why their work is loose or tight or uneven or really anything less than perfect. But something I love about knitting is that it's a record of your inner dialogue. That swatch knit at the yarn store table with a cozy cup of coffee and a helpful (and more experienced) knitter nearby is going to be a lot more relaxed than the sweater begun a week later while sitting next to a hospital bed - just like the knitter.

Unfortunately, this also applies to my own knitting. For years, I was apparently unaffected by the shifts and turmoils in my own life, so I assumed that I was exempt from the rule - when the reality was, in fact, that I wasn't really experiencing any of those on anything deeper than a surface level because everything was deadened by depression. When I finally started to really…


A few years ago, I was introduced to the concept of replacing the traditional list of resolutions with a single word. It appealed to me - I am not a big list person, but I love language and words and meanings and etymology and metaphor and... ahem. Ennyhoo. I liked the idea.
I've never chosen the word. It's always presented itself to me - and last year was no different. Pacific was very insistent, even though I tried to argue with it. Pacific? What does that even mean? What am I supposed to do with that?
But I accepted it, and I'm glad I did. I learned about depth and calm, about storm and nurture, about faith and adventure - and about the unstoppable ocean of God's grace, that overwhelms to fill and cleanse and bring blessings unasked.
So I'm bidding pacific a very fond farewell, and welcoming spark and whatever lessons it would like to bring. I invited it in with a copper wire punctuated with tiny lights and wrapped around my mood board, and I've got an empt…