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Haiti {Everyday Beautiful}

Companies employing Haitian artisans, left to right: Vi Bella, BelJoy, 107 Market Street

{Kristen Welch, founder of Mercy House Global, author of Raising Grateful Kids in an Entitled Worldand blogger at We Are THAT Family, has already written an excellent piece on this (which you should go read) - so I'll only add a little bit to that...}

There are over 1,000 lives lost in Haiti as a result of the recent devastation of Hurricane Matthew. I see the images coming out of that, and there doesn't seem to be anything beautiful there, so I pray for lights - people who will live and love like Jesus, bringing hope and help to those in need.

Then, while I was in Remedy Road last weekend (watch for a post on them later this week!), I spotted a super-cute pink bracelet that settled onto my unusually small wrist nicely, which the tag declared to be a product of Haiti. And I realized; there are the lights. People who are creating jobs and empowering Haitians to care for themselves and their families with dignity, and who are committed to remaining in place as those same artisan hands work to rebuild not just their own families, but also their country. And that is a beautiful thing.

Find a list of businesses you can support, and ways that you can provide constructive assistance, here.

This post is day 12 in my 31 Days series, 31 Days of Everyday Beautiful - for an introduction and more posts, head here.


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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…