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A Handful of Pixie Dust

As joyous as the upcoming family-centric holiday season should be, at this particular life-stage it can be more of a cause of stress than a blessing (especially for this introverted introvert). Trying to uphold traditions and necessary schedules, and finding the balance between others' expectations and what's best for our own little family... 'tis the season for grace. Lots and lots of grace.

I got some practice this past weekend, when we went to Fayetteville for part of two days. It could have been horrible - we drove up one morning and returned the next afternoon, stayed with my parents, visited Adam's, and had a long to-do list of tasks that needed to be accomplished while we were there. But it was lovely.

Brooklyn slept extremely well the one night we stayed, and awoke delighted (if a little earlier than usual). She was patient and contented for the drive both ways, and spent a grand Saturday with Adam and his parents as we divided-and-conquered and I met a friend for a couple of hours and ran some errands (and stopped by Handheld's beautiful new location for some yarn and a few moments of knitting).

There were so many possible opportunities to stress. Getting up in time to meet my friend. How was that going to work out with when Brooklyn got up? Originally I was meeting two people, so there was that coordinating to do (the second person ended up being able to come by where I already was). There were things that needed to be got. But Brooklyn needs to nap about 4 hours after she gets up, so if she got up too early that would shorten the time I had to do things in (and also shorten the time she and Adam got to spend at his parents')... the list goes on.

But you know what? If you just put on a cute outfit and decide to have fun with it, trusting that the ones (or One) who so faithfully take care of you will continue to do so, then usually everything works out (and if it doesn't, you at least had a good attitude about it and it doesn't seem as bad as it could). Faith, trust, and pixie dust, and you may take flight in a pair of tied-on butterfly wings. Toddlers can be insightful that way, and sometimes pixie dust is just another word for grace.

So I've learned valuable lessons in simplification, and faith, that I can apply to my day today and to the weeks ahead. My focus should be on today, anyway, instead of stressing about what's to come - the One who makes the sun rise and brings new mercies to every morning has a handle on tomorrow and He is faithful to provide.

What areas in your life could use a handful of pixie dust (also know as grace)?


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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…