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The Latin word from which we get "inspire" (to animate) is from the same root as spirit (to breathe). Inspiration isn't just an idea - it's life and beauty, breathed into raw materials to turn them into something greater.

I noticed while knitting at work the other day that everything in my vicinity coordinated, and couldn't resist capturing it. Between working on other things and stopping to take pictures of stuff, I've (finally) finished the first leg of Pensive, and plan to finish the second one this next week while Adam's gone. I hoped that trying on the first one would motivate me to finish the second one, so I can wear them - it's looking like that tactic will actually work.

More gratuitous pretty. It's hard not to tip a waitress who provides great service, has gorgeous handwriting, and is an artist to boot. Or maybe I have my own unique system for determining how much of a tip someone deserves...

This was on my windshield a few mornings ago. There was just enough frost that I couldn't drive safely, so I moved to a sunny spot and waited for it to thaw or my engine to warm up (whichever came first). The sun won the contest.

Between bouts of Tag Wars (she pulls the tag out, I put it back), Sasha has been providing me with some great photo ops by doing cute and funny things - the latest being taking over a customer's basket while they were deliberating over some other yarn. She stayed in the basket while it was carried to the counter and everything else was taken out of it, and finally departed in offense a few minutes later.

Adam and I tried Fresco Cafe for lunch before doing a photo shoot on the Square. It was positively amazing - delicious salad, I had a gf pizza that was quite pizza-like and Adam had a gf panini that more than satisfied his craving for Panera or Atlanta Bread Company. It was priced similarly, which was great - and we enjoyed looking out over Fayetteville while we ate.

Deep Roots is a hat I finished awhile ago, but never got around to publishing. I had fun with the slightly jagged twisted ribbing, and I'm working on a matching scarf (using sock weight yarn. It may be awhile.)

When Hand Held got in Liberty Wool last winter, I fell in love with this color and wanted to knit something with it. But I couldn't think what, so I waited. I finally had an idea on Thursday for a slouchy hat, so I snagged the yarn and made it that very day. Faytown also gave me an idea for a design series called "Local Flavor," inspired by Fayetteville, specifically the Square/Block St/Dickson St/campus area. I've already got 4 or 5 more ideas, and I'm hoping to kind of make it into an ongoing project. Going along with Mark's Dickson Street Initiative, this will force me to ask myself what someone else would wear or use (not my normal starting point when designing) so hopefully I'll come out of this with a clearer understanding of Fayetteville's culture. I'd also like to photoshoot at/use props and supplemental garments from local businesses as much as possible - it would be fun to involve them in my project, I think. And if you know me, you know that I am all for promoting the places I like and getting others to like them, too. :)

Also, I realized after I put up the last post that it was my 150th on this blog - random and pointless, but fascinating (to me).

21/Jan/2013: Update!

Delighted, complete! Adam and I took pictures yesterday after church, in a dry and wintery field across from our apartment. I can honestly say, and I really don't like scarves because they are long and boring, that I would make another one of these. It was fun!


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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…