Tuesday, March 29, 2011

along the way

Have you ever walked through a season littered with lessons?  I'm there.  right now.  Sometimes the lessons are delightful and I relish the new things I'm learning and other times I'd really rather look away than deal with the reality that is my ugly heart.  I've been deliberately crawling through this winter headed into what will inevitably become spring and I anxiously await for the new growth to show up on the trees and in my life.
Along the way I've been learning:
~to open my hands to whatever God gives...
~that I want to live fully not empty
~the height of my joy is found in the depth of my thanks
~hurry always empties a soul
~my hope is not in a calm, perfectly planned schedule-my hope is in Christ
~life is dessert and I need to savor it - life is not an emergency
Many of the lessons I've been learning have correlated perfectly to the reading that I've been doing as I work my way through Ann Voskamp's book,  one thousand gifts.  I'm so thankful for her insights and her honesty...If you have some time for cultivating new growth in your life I highly recommend her book. 
I'm so thankful for seasons of learning and new growth...even when the lessons come hard.  How about you....What are you learning right now in your life? 

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

settling back in

Settling back into a regular routine has been delightful. There's just something good about being back in your own bed and being able to make your own breakfast.  I can only endure continental 'eggs' for so many days. 
The basketball trip was a huge success....everyone who went (60+ parents, coaches and athletes) seemed to have a great time.  It's always fun to get to know the other parents in such a unique setting....you learn a lot about other people when you're schlepping from court to court and cheering your brains out until 11:30 at night.  It's quite the bonding time. 
 Both Varsity teams competed hard in their brackets.  The girls took second place and the boys placed third.  It was a week of perservering and learning to dig down deep. (for the adults as well as the athletes)  I'm so proud of all the kids, they displayed such character and handled the grueling days and nights extremely well. 
 Thanks for all the well wishes on my thumb ...I survived the week without knitting a stitch.  It's probably a good thing I didn't take any knitting, considering the lack of sleep that occurred, knitting may have proved quite dangerous.   My thumb is feeling better and now that it's baseball season, I'll have plenty of knitting time at the ball field!  
I've got the laundry almost caught up and we haven't eaten our meals off of a tray in three days... It's so true - there's no place like home! 

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Flying the nest...

We're heading to a basketball tournament in Lynchburg, VA.  It'll be a week full of hoops, friends and lots of memories.  Molly and Barbara are holding down the fort while we're gone.  I've got our bags packed and the water is loaded into the back of the van.  And guess what, I'm not taking any knitting!  {gasp}  Apparently knitting all those dishcloths (5 in one week) gave me a case of tendonitis and I've got to rest my thumb for a while......extreme knitting, who knew!?!  So instead of purling my way down the highway,  I'll be taking pictures and doing a little bit of reading. 

As we fly the nest, I thought I'd leave you with some pictures of my lastest sewing project.  Lola.
 Isn't she adorable? Gingercake has the cutest patterns and I made Lola the owl for my god-daughter.  I'm not sure whether she'll be gifted for Easter or Christmas....?  I already have requests for three others.  The directions and the pattern were easy to follow and I loved the fact that once I paid with Paypal, I received the pattern right to my computer.   She's got a cute little pocket on her back, perfect for tucking in secret love notes or gift cards.  With less than a yard of fabric, I've got a great gift and I'm certain there will be more feathered friends in my future.    Have fun checking out Virginia's website, it's full of great projects and patterns and enjoy the remainder of your week - 'Owl' be back soon! 

Thursday, March 10, 2011

my boys couldn't get it done..

My beloved Mountaineers couldn't pull out the win over Marquette in the Big East conference tournament.  It was a heart breaker.   
 photo from Big East.org
Even  though my team is one and done....I'm sure not.  I started knitting dishcloths at the beginning of the tournament and I've been knocking them off almost as quickly as the Mountaineers left the big Apple.  Three down and two more rounds of action to go....
I had an hour and a half to myself the other night.  Nobody was home except Molly the dog and me.  I was talking to my mom and she asked me what I was planning to do.  "Watch basketball and knit" was my reply. 
 I love this time of year and it doesn't even really matter to me who is playing. (Although I'd prefer for it to be WVU) I love all the action.  I've been watching the wins and losses and counting the dishcloths as they pile up. 
Even though my boys couldn't get it done...it won't stop me from getting the dishcloths done.  Let the March madness continue!  (although I may need to make a run for more cotton yarn....in between games of course!)
Gotta go...it's tip off time! 

Saturday, March 5, 2011

blessing stockpile #1

I've been working on my ADVENTure bit by bit.  Thinking through my gift list and planning out some projects to work on ahead of the holiday rush might sound a bit over-achieverish...but I know that the reality is that I'm merely trying to get ahead of the curve and enjoy the process.  This first blessing stockpile is a January/February combo.  Some of these gifts took weeks to actually materialize.  (precisely why I mentioned the whole bit by bit detail)

Teacher pencil pouches:
These are gathered clutches by Noodlehead.  One is slimmer than the other because I didn't have enough of the pink fabric.  (Don't let things like fabric amounts deter you...just make due with what you've got when at all possible).  I really enjoyed Anna's step by step tutorial until I got to the final step and had some trouble getting the little zipper thingys to look right.  Eventually I caught on to the fact that YOU CAN'T SEW THROUGH THEM...you must sew BESIDE THEM.  (those capitals are my note to self) 
I lined them with some fun pops of color.  I plan on giving these with some Ticonderoga pencils (my favorite) and a gift card for the teachers in my kids lives. 

Feather and Fan dishcloth
This is my favorite dishcloth pattern.  I love to use varigated yarn with it as it always turns out so pretty.  However, following on the heels of my Diamond Cable Gilet...this little dishcloth was almost my undoing.  I frogged it 5 times.   Hello....was it worth it?  By the fifth time I was merely showing it who the boss was.  I won.  There will be more of these.  I have at least 4 people that I'm planning on gifting dishcloths and fancy soap.  

Dropped Stitch Pattern Scarf
I love how this turned out....but I didn't enjoy knitting it.  There are a lot of yarn overs and it required me to pay lots of attention.  Apparently I didn't want to give it all the attention that it required and it just made me want to get it done.  Now that it's done, I like it a lot.  The pattern wasn't hard...just picky. 
I used one skein of  Araucania, Ulmo Multy, in color #704 and size 7 needles. 
If you haven't started your own ADVENTure yet, I highly encourage you to join the fun.  Slowly, bit by bit you too can stockpile blessings that will make the holidays a lot more enjoyable.  Kristyn has even set up a flickr group where you can find even more inspiration.