Saturday, July 19, 2014

Worthwhile Reads and Lovely Things (the teal hair, French revolution edition)

Note:  this post contains affiliate links.  Thanks for your support!

We got our revolution on at Indiana Bastille Day, a favorite Fortville event.
Welcome to my new readers and to those of you returning to visit this space. Thanks for joining me!  If you don't mind my tendency to ramble on about about life and knitting along with the occasional spilled cup of coffee or swear word, then this is the spot for you.

On the weekends I like to share what I'm reading, listening to, and a few fun pictures from the past week. So, lets get to the good stuff!

Here are this week's worthwhile reads and lovely things ...

 Find of the week - Walking Tacos. The Karma Kitchen food truck was at Indiana Bastille Day (yes, I know the irony of discovering walking tacos at a French themed event, ha ha) and Christopher bought me walking tacos.  Holy wow! Where have these been all my life?  

Also, the Karma Kitchen folks are awesome! The food was delicious (we might have gone back to their truck more than once during the day and they might have known the names of all of our children before we were through, ahem) and the folks who run it are kind, fun people. Indiana folks, if Karma Kitchen comes to your event, line up! You won't be sorry.

Books - I finished reading The Thousand Autumns of Jacob de Zoet by David Mitchell. It took me sixty or so pages to get into this book, but once I fell into the story I didn't want to come out. Beautifully written. I cried at the end. This was the first book by this author I have read and I loved it.  Weeks later and I still can't stop thinking about it.
Blogs -The amazing and bubbly Kandee Johnson thinks there is a lot that is awesome about dying your hair teal.  And you know what, friends? I totally agree with her - green, teal, purple, pink, dying my hair has been one of the best decisions I've made in my 40s so far.  Rock it, friends! Be yourself and have fun with it.

Speaking of awesome, my friend Tsh and her family launched their travel blog. This homebody has totally been bitten by the travel bug ever since that brave weekend last October when Jillian and I went There and Back Again. Tsh and her influence are part of the reason that there are lots of maps and dreams and travel plans being made around here (and an extra pep in our step to pay off that debt and get out there!) Go check out The Art of Simple Travel here.

I'm going to pause a second here and talk about that There and Back Again post one more time just in case you missed it.  Someone emailed me a while back and asked me how I knew that things were changing for me, when I could tell that I was making progress in my fight against depression.  For me it was that trip back in October of last year.  Travel might not be everyone's thing, it might not be what YOU need, but it was what I needed.  It was the brave thing I needed to do to prove to myself that I could do it.

Podcast - This week during my listening time I caught up with one of my favorite podcasters (and an Indiana gal) The Fat Squirrel. Do you know about Amy Beth? She's kinda quirky, a little sassy, a great story teller, and definitely knows her knitting!

Pinterest - My most popular pin this week (by far!) was this one. You guys are in the mood for sweaters I guess.  Me, too! This cool fall like weather is certainly helping encourage that, too.  Pass the pumpkin spice and the chambray shirts, please. I think making tee shirt yarn would be really fun and I want to see if this works, too.

One quick Pinterest note: if you are reading here mainly because of the knitting content and you want to follow me on Pinterest, too but  you don't want all of the other stuff I pin in your stream, you can just follow my Knitting board

YouTube - I've been loving the tips shared on How Jen Does It's youTube channel recently.  She put up two really helpful videos: one on avoiding waste when you purchase produce and one with freezer tips on the foods she freezes and how she freezes them.

I also discovered a new to me YouTuber, MakeupTIA. I really appreciate the calm, soothing tone these videos have and I have found some new things I'd like to try. It's more than just makeup, Ashley also shares some of her favorite food, fashion, and natural body care picks. The most recent video I watched showcased her Summer Essentials.

Ravelry and Knitting - I'm working on sharing with you a big post of all the projects I currently have on the needles and I'll be updating my Ravelry for all of them, too. There's quite a bit as July has caught me with a case of cast-on-itis. So much for that era of monogamous knitting, eh?

::: And that's what I found worthwhile and lovely this week.  How about you? :::
...  ...  ...  ...  ...

Want to keep up with me?  You can follow me here:
Just joining me? Welcome! You can get to know me a little better here. Over there on my blog's sidebar I've got a sort of playlist of all of the things I write about here.  You're welcome to pull up a chair and stay a while.  The love songs are my favorite.

Friday, July 18, 2014

7 Quick Takes {internet "lemons" and lessons, towers, and why I still believe we live in a beautiful world}

Note: there may be affiliate links in this post. Thanks!
When the internet gives you hassles, pull out your journal and end up feeling better about your blog. Due to some behind-the-scenes stuff going on with my other blog, I ended up having an unexpected vacation from work and writing. It spilled over into this space and things were quiet (and look, the internet kept on going on without me!)

I realized that, aside from taking six weeks when Amelia was born in 2011, I haven't really taken an extended break. You know, like a break where I actually sleep and stuff.

Sure, there have been times I haven't been publishing, but that didn't mean that I wasn't working on projects and still writing.  I took a week and didn't type a word, but did all my writing in a journal.  Getting back to old fashioned pen and paper felt really, really good.

I have friends who blog this way, writing first on paper and then taking it to their computer keys. In fact, I've flirted with this way of writing before.  But, I always felt like I lost time (and I don't have much writing time) and so I didn't stick with it for longer than a few days.  However, this past week has shown me that while I might lose in time, because it does take more time to hand write, I gain benefits in the editing process as I convert my chicken scratch into a blog post.

Simple, but unexpected writing lesson for me, courtesy of what could have been an inconvenience. So, there's my "when life gives you lemons" lesson for the week.

Kids grow up. For a long time, especially during the 3 under 5 years, it felt like we had one big kid and three little kids.  This summer it has really hit home that we now have 3 big kids and one little kid (who luckily still calls herself a "baby" at turning-three-in-less-than-three-weeks-oh-my-goodness and I'm going right along with that.)

Towers.  Like Jenga, only GIANT.  We discovered this at Bastille Day and it was so much fun! I think we're going to have to make a set for our backyard.

We live in a beautiful world I don't know what the news has been like in your part of the world, but in my little corner it seems like it has been one heartbreak and disaster after another. There are some really tragic and sick things ... heartbreaking things. While my own personal July has been mostly lovely, there are many in my community who haven't been so blessed.

It can be very easy to forget that while this world is broken, it is still beautiful. Happiness may be hard won, the smiles few and far between, but sometimes when we are the most broken and yet rise up, we are at our most beautiful.

At least that is what I'm choosing to believe today.

We don't even have a shed but, now I totally want one just so I can copy my fabulous friend Amy. Have you seen this amazing Backyard Shed Makeover? Wowza!

(At the very least, I'm totally in love with that Benjamin Moore Gray Owl paint and have been hatching all kinds of painting plans indoors to tide me over until I can convince Christopher we *need* a shed/playhouse/party room in our backyard.)

Totally not the best picture of me (thanks a ton humidity and wind) but isn't this fella I'm married to so handsome? I got lucky, baby, when I found you. (thanks for the lyrical borrow, Tom)

Yeah. This is a sweet gig.

Scroll back up to that picture of me for a moment.  Notice how my roots are coming in whiter and faster since I started dying my hair fun colors?  It's a sign, I'm telling you. 

Now, what next?  Purple? Bright red? Hot pink?


For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

...  ...  ...  ...  ...

Want to keep up with me?  You can follow me here:
Just joining me? Hopped over here from the Link Up? Welcome! You can get to know me a little better here. Over there on my blog's sidebar ---> I've got a playlist of all of the things I write about here.  You're welcome to pull up a chair and stay a while.  The love songs are my favorite.