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Tobin has increased his mimicking this week - imitating me when I talk with my hands, wielding Brooklyn's electronic drumstick accurately and with great enthusiasm, trying to turn the pages of books instead of just eating them...

He's also been giving nose boops, and Brooklyn successfully taught him how to do a high five, so now if you hold your hand out he will excitedly slap it, while looking at you for confirmation that he's doing it right. She is beyond thrilled with her success and randomly takes toys out of his hand, extending hers, and saying "High fives?"

Brooklyn has developed by leaps and bounds this week. She's been stacking blocks (she made it up to 12, consistently, and could have done more but the top of the tower was out of reach at that point), drawing logical conclusions based on observed behaviors...

Doing laundry (putting dirty clothes in the correct person's hamper, emptying the dryer into a basket, loading the washer, bringing the next hamper to wait by the door), helping load the dishwasher (mostly silverware), giving accurate directions when I tell her where we're going and then ask which way at each turn...

Besides just generally developing her own big little personality. It's really interesting to see the ways that we're different, and the ways we're the same.

I'm especially impressed given that they've both had a sniffle this past week - Brooklyn got it first, then shared it with Tobin. It's not too bad, thankfully, and they're both recovering well (and it hasn't spread to the grown ups - yet).

I did have to spend one entire night snuggling Tobin to keep him from running a fever (why do they only develop temperatures at night and/or on weekends?!) but he's such a sweetie that it wasn't much of a sacrifice (other than needing to be up and around and mentally functional the next morning in order to teach a knitting class at church).

This is the last really normal week until Christmas - we'll have Thanksgiving with family, followed by a series of weekends spent at least partly in Fayetteville (for a craft show/meeting a friend, a wedding, and Tobin's birthday) - I'm increasingly grateful that we decided to spend Christmas at home alone together.

2135. A day of rest, with a midday lunch date with Adam
2136. Solitary writing time
2137. Adam home in time for dinner and to help with (much-needed) baths
2138. Tobin's excitement over riding in carts
2139. Brooklyn helping with the laundry - emptying the dryer, loading the washer, and asking to do hers along with everyone else's
2140. A long hot soak in the tub with a good book
2141. A manageably sized knitting class at church
2142. Adam staying with Brooklyn and Tobin all morning, and taking them on adventures
2143. An evening walk at the park
2144. Meeting up with the people we needed to meet up with at church
2145. Adam staying after to help move chairs - and that enough people were there to help that it didn't take very long
2146. The right words at the right time, for a guest post


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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…