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Chasing Beauty

May was an interesting month. Lots of it was cold and rainy, which very reflected my emotional dreariness and mental fog, but there were patches of sunshine. One of those was deciding that just because our old favorite park is no longer the closest park, does not mean that we can't still go there. So we did. Several times. And it was glorious.

We've also gone to the library lots, joined their summer reading club, and started doing more art (after lunch is now Art Time - it delays naps, which delays the witching hour. Sanity Rules). Because Fancy Nancy has good ideas, we're also planning to paint a mural of sorts on our old, boring, soon-to-be-replaced privacy fence. Because a full rainbow of partial gallons and quarts of house paint isn't doing anyone any good stacked in a locker in the garage.

I finally got to volunteer at The Little Craft Show (which I've wanted to do since they began), and had a grand time announcing giveaway winners and helping with tear down afterwards - in addition to spending some time before my shift shopping (right this moment I'm trying to finish off a candle so I can start on the one I bought there - it has a wooden wick, so it crackles charmingly while it's burning).

There was coffee (isn't there always?) and lots and lots of knitting (more on that later). Really, listing things off and looking back, I can't really quantify why it felt like a rough month. But I also can't deny that it certainly felt like one.

But now it's June, which is one month closer to my Bear being home, and I've decided to ascribe to the Birthday Month system, doubling up for me and Brooklyn. Making art a daily thing made me realize how much intentionally chasing beauty makes life better. So I've got beautiful plans for this month - starting with a trip to the library and coffee after, this morning.


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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…