Side Effects of Happiness

IMG_1718

When I think of being happy, I think of my husband, comfortable pj pants, warm wool socks, a large cup of coffee, my cabinet of yarn, my healthy family, my sweet kitties, sumo caterpillars…what about you?

On to the “side effects” part…I am one who will read all the inserts of medicines AFTER I’ve taken them. Usually those inserts will include a pretty descriptive list of side effects like nausea & drowsiness all the way up to do not operate heavy machinery & may cause stomach bleeding. After I read the info, I find myself overthinking all of these possible side effects, wondering if I’m really nauseous or if I’m making myself that way with all the worrying. Are you this way? The mind is a mighty powerful thing.

But side effects of Happiness? Wow. Could it be general feelings of love, comfort, safety, contentment, bliss? Those sound pretty positive, but what about those other side effects? The ones that leave you feeling not-so-happy.

When I find myself in a happy state, I often find myself overly aware of the side effects. Like wondering if I deserve to be so happy, wondering when all this wonderful will end, wondering when things are supposed to be hard, wondering why everyone else seems unhappy, or wondering if I’m really happy.

Sounds like sabotage.

This happens with anything in my life, most recently this blog. I have really, really enjoyed writing this blog, meeting others through the blog, and having a little motivation to start and finish projects. It’s been great! But I do look around at other blogs and think, I wish my blog was this great. I do a little clicking, a little research, and I start wondering if I’m good enough, if I deserve even what I have, when things will end, and on and on. I want to make improvements, but where to start?

I don’t want to completely imitate other great blogs, but I want to be just as inspiring to others as those wonderful blogs I read are to me! I guess this whole post is just a little introspection, airing out a few doubts, putting my thoughts out there. Maybe this is a good way to reach someone. 🙂

Now, onto what you really came here for, a little bit of knitting progress!

IMG_1716

Spring cleaning kicked in & I took some time to reorganize my yarn cabinet and put in some new acquisitions into Ravelry. Plus I took some time to really weigh some partial skeins and put that info into Rav as well. It felt great to get this beast a little more organized, plus it was SOOOOO nice to just fondle all the yarn. I totally pulled everything out.

IMG_1715

While I was going through bags of yarn scraps, I found all these stitch markers!!!! I guess I can’t justify buying any more of those.

IMG_1714

I also came across this lovely project…you remember the Never-Ending First Project. I’m going to put a few rows on that bad boy and see where it takes me. I’ve got 2.5 balls of yarn (Artful Yarns Vineyard, 55/45 wool/acrylic in color 7908) involved so far and 1.5 to go.

Finally, I know this is a wee bit long, but I can’t leave out linking up with these lovelies!
Tammy for her Stitch Along Wednesday
Ginny for Yarn Along
Nicole for Keep Calm Craft On
Beth for Whatcha Workin’ On Wednesday

Jenna

Advertisements

Thoughts about Tuesdays…

I realize this is different from the usual Technique Tuesday, but I couldn’t resist since I missed my Monday Musing but have had some blogging and knitting thoughts bubbling around in my brain. I think it’s important to decide what to let out and what to keep in. I’ve seen a quote wandering around Pinterest lately that has resonated with me on that regard.
quote about saying things

Mayhaps this shows a little maturity on my part. To think about things before saying them, whether they are true or relevant or necessary to be said. I often think some of the things in my brain are true and/or relevant, but the last thought about it being necessary often helps me to control the word vomit.

As for today’s thoughts about the fiber arts blogging world (AKA knit blogosphere), I’m still so amazed at all the people out there who blog! I love reading posts about their patterns and yarns and families. Some of my favorites are about deciding on new projects, how they got through the tough parts of a project, and finally, their finished projects. I certainly am living vicariously through all of you who post about finishing things!!

I feel like I’m always working on something, but the finishing doesn’t come. This is reason #1 I have yet to participate in a FO Friday, but have no problems posting on WIP Wednesday. This has caused me to take a step back and look at what I really have cast-on at the moment. What types of things are holding up my needles and project bags?

First off, I have a darling niece who will soon enter this world and I am working on this awesome slipped stitch blanket (Midsummer Baby Blanket) on size 7 needles and it’s taking a while. I do love that it feels/looks like I’m doing some super intense colorwork (kind of) but it’s really just a slipped stitch pattern.

IMG_1198

This is my first project like this and it’s super fun. It’s just that the blanket is a little big and not moving super fast. This could also have something to do with me spending more time unpacking, playing with my kitties, ogling my yarn storage or just reading blogs than actually sitting down to knit on the thing. I did accomplish quite a bit yesterday when I really focused on just knitting and not reaching for my computer to browse.

IMG_1199

I’m about 10 color stripes into the 4th color. I’ve got about 5 more color stripes to go in the teal then I’ll be on my last color, a super fun, bright coral.

IMG_1200

Since joining the blogging world, I’ve been much more active on Ravelry, especially in the forums section. I even joined a summer yarn swap, Yarn Bliss. Being so caught up in our move and knitting for my niece, I didn’t realize how quickly the deadline was approaching. I logged on today and got a nice little reminder that our packages need to be sent out by August 1!!

This means that since I want to include a hand-knit item I need to get stitchin! My lovely new yarn storage (that I’m obsessed with) came in very handy as inspiration.

IMG_1197

I was able to go through some of my physical pattern library (thanks to Stephanie at Woolythyme‘s post on her Library vs. Ravelry) and found the perfect pattern. I even looked back through my stash and found the perfect skein that I think will fit her preferred colors and the pattern…OH JEEZ I’M PUMPED!!!! I’m not going to mention the pattern or the yarn because I’m not sure if my swap partner is reading this 🙂

Another fun thing about this yarn swap? I get to buy some new yarn…to send to my partner!! Does that mean I’m breaking my yarn diet? I sure hope not since I’m not buying the yarn for me, but for a friend as a gift. It will give me a good excuse to check out some of the shops in my new town. I’ve been scoping them out using KnitMap. It’s a neat little website that will usually show you most of the crafting stores in the area you choose. I would recommend calling the shops before you make a visit as I’ve been to a shop that was closed down completely and another that the website had incorrect hours listed for it.

Have you ever participated in a yarn swap?

knit-side-and-purl-side

v’s & bumps,

Jenna

Moving Madness

I started this post last week before we packed up. Then we were without internet and still are at home. I’m missing the blog world! And my friends I feel like I’ve made over the web in this crazy fiber world.

In big news, we have moved to Saint Louis, Missouri! Closer to family and friends all around 🙂 My husband and I both have jobs, and I’ve had a chance to reorganize my yarn!!!

Here’s a sneak peek of that…

yarn cabinet

I took my ikea bookshelf with glass doors and decided that after two rough moves, it may be better suited to holding my yarn. It was excellent therapy to go through all the crazy bags and the storage bench and load it into a display case. This way I can see it all! Being able to easily access all of my glorious stash is making it very easy to resist heading over to the yarn stores I have not visited in my new town. I’m sure I will mosey on over that way when the time comes, but for now, I’m happily ogling my “new” display.

I think this is all I’m going to talk about for now, until we get our internet installed tomorrow. Maybe then I can do a fun WIP Wednesday post!

knit-side-and-purl-side

 

v’s & bumps,

Jenna

Trying to Control the Hoard

IMG_0832

I mean stash…I’ve been reading a few posts about going on a diet…of the yarn buying kind. I’m sure my husband, my wallet, and my movers (we are headed to St. Louis at the end of the month!!) would appreciate a little break from yarn buying. So for today’s Technique Tuesday, I’m going to explore a technique to help me not buy more yarn.

I’m going to browse my stash online or in person every time I feel the pull of the LYS. This would require that I update my stash a little on Ravelry. I have a few skeins I haven’t put into there yet from recent trips and yarn store adventures. I think by checking out my stash whenever I find a new pattern to knit or I just get a hankering to knit something, I can quell my desire to run out for something new.

I think to make this most effective, I need some pretty and accessible yarn storage. It needs to be something that I can look through to see my yarn. I also need to be able to feel it. This is what I’ve got right now:

This one is all my projects in progress with a few new skeins thrown in.IMG_1135

This is some of my purchases in the last year or so.
IMG_1137

This is my some of my original stash. I bought this chest originally to house my stash. I have slowly outgrown my cute chest.
IMG_1138

I know that someone out there has to have some gorgeous yarn storage. I don’t just want bins or boxes, so I went online to find some inspiration. Maybe something like this I found on the Loopy Ewe:
yarn storage1

Or this I found on a post at Rosepath:
yarn storage2

I think my cats would have a field day with this, but like the post  says, “it doubles as wall art!” As does this one from Knits for Life:
yarn storage3

In our new place I’m banking on a closet for my yarn, so maybe something more like this that I found at Trials & Pixelations:
yarn storage4

I like all of these storage ideas because you can really see what you have AND you can feel the yarn! Softness & squishibility are characteristics I definitely take into consideration whenever buying yarn.

However, creating gorgeous storage is going to have to wait because we are moving to St. Louis at the end of the month!! We just got approved for our new place and we are so excited for a change! I love moving into a place and making it my own.

What does your stash storage look like? Do you wish your stash storage was better in any way??

knit-side-and-purl-side

v’s & bumps,

Jenna