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Take a Walk, Slow Down, Smell the Flowers

This week in mommy fashion: skirts! Specifically, broomstick. They're washable, they come in different lengths, they're cooler in the summer than jeans (my preferred favorite) and prettier than shorts, and they're full (which allows for better mobility - a must!) I have several from a Himalayan shop on Block Street in Fayetteville that are knee-length - they have elastic and ties, so I was able to wear them while I was pregnant (bonus!) This one was given to me, and I was originally planning on dying it with indigo, because white and I are a bad combination, but I've worn it several times in the past few weeks and I'm tempted to leave it white (at least, until I get something on it. Then I can always overdye it...) Those silk wrap skirts are good, too, as far as being cool and comfortable - but they need to be hand washed (translation: soaked in a sink full of cold water, swished whenever you walk by and remember, then hung up over the shower curtain rod to dry) and you have to make sure that you tied a good knot (so, probably not the best choice if you have a tot who's interested in strings).

If Spring makes you want to accessorize your wardrobe, head over to (in)courage - today they're talking about a great company that has some really cute bags, and a great array of organic cotton tees! (That's especially exciting to me, since tees are very much a staple in my wardrobe. If you're interested in the Live Mercy tee above, you'll find that and info about Mercy House here). And they better-than meet my slavery-free parameters. From their website: "Freeset USA represents Freeset Bags & Apparel, a fair trade business offering employment to women trapped in Kolkata's sex trade. They make quality bags and 100% organic cotton t-shirts, but together our business is freedom. We would like to see the 10,000 sex workers in Freeset's neighborhood empowered with the positive choice to leave a profession they never chose in the first place."

To encourage sticking with my going-to-bed-when-Adam-does (which I have been sticking with, although I've reached the resenting point that I was afraid of last week - it seems like we're sleepy and awake at different times, so I'm either exhausted or wired when he's ready for bed), my only current non-Bible read is Money Saving Mom's new book Say Goodbye to Survival Mode (which she generously gave me, as part of her promotion of Lisa-Jo's Maubane project - this offer is still open, btw). I'm only a few chapters in - so far, I've made a "best stuff" list (as a reference for prioritizing), practiced saying no (that's a big part of getting to bed earlier), and examined the talents that God has given me alongside the talents that He has given to other people (in order to prevent a pursuit of things that I'm not meant to be doing). I've been enjoying it - I'll post an update when I'm finished, with final thoughts. Hopefully once I finish this post I'll have time to sit in the sun and read another chapter before Brooklyn wakes up from her nap.

I am so ready for warmer weather. It's been an exceptionally cold wet Winter (which is good for the ground and gets rid of bugs, I'll readily admit) and I didn't even have to deal with the worst of it - but there's only so long that I, or Brooklyn, can handle being stuck inside. It also occurred to me that Brooklyn stopped sleeping through the night at the same time as it got too cold for us to go for a walk every evening, and that's a theory I'm anxious to test (especially if it means not getting woken up every 3-4 hours all. night. long). I've been holding onto the promise of a farmer's market and contenting myself with flowers from Whole Foods, from Colombia (I think) - but today is warmer, so hopefully we can spend a good chunk of it outside (grass! trees! nature!)

Hopes for the coming of Spring? Tips for surviving the last few weeks of Winter? I'd love to hear your thoughts!
Also, come back tomorrow for an update about an awesome project, and another giveaway!


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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…