Thursday, November 28, 2013

The Smallest of Blessings

The last few days have involved me dreading this holiday- this Thanksgiving. 

For starters, I've been knocked down with a cold and have been feeling miserable for days. It's not chilly outside, so it doesn't feel like it's supposed to be Thanksgiving. But, most of all, November 28 marks the one year anniversary since my Grandpa passed away. 

Celebrating without him today hurts. I miss him dearly. 

However, I've learned that there are so many blessings I experience and encounter every single day. Blessings to be thankful for this holiday season.

I'm thankful that I've been able to find a new passion in Jamberry Nails and share that passion with my family. The other day, my cousin and I watched How the Grinch Stole Christmas while applying our nail shields-- the perfect *together* activity for us. 

I'm thankful I have co-workers that tried to make the last few work days a lot less miserable for me by providing me with a new appreciation for hot tea and cough drops. 

I'm thankful I've been able to make friends in all of my pursuits these last few months. A huge, special thank you to my Ravelry, Jamberry, and church friends :) 

I'm thankful to know that families are together forever, and someday, I'll be seeing my Grandpa again. I'm thankful to know he is feeling infinitely better now than he did his last few years on this earth. 

Things are crazy, hectic, and a roller coaster. But I've come to understand the significance of the saying "Find joy in the journey.

In a world full of negativity, it's easy to get bogged down. But recognizing and remembering the smallest of blessings can make a huge impact on our perspective. And, for that, I am thankful. 

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Jamberry Nails!

Today, I'm going to tell you about how I came to find my newest obsession. 

I do a lot every day. Work, school, craft. Most of the stuff I do involves me staring at my hands; whether it be counting money (I'm a teller), typing, or crocheting, I'm looking at my fingernails.

So I decided a few months ago that I would make my nails at least somewhat pretty to look at. I got a gel manicure. $35 for something that lasts up to 3 weeks if you're lucky. The first one was pretty cute. The second one was okay. The third time, it was atrocious. I ended up chipping off the gel-acrylic stuff within a week... Total money down the drain. 

Thus, I decided I'd just go back to painting my nails. Maybe putting glitter nail polish on would keep it longer, since it's such a pain to remove. This was wrong; it still chipped within two days! 

Then one day, a miracle happened! I found Jamberry Nails. And I am HOOKED! There are so many cute designs, application is easy-peasy, and the price cannot be beat. 

They don't chip off when I'm crocheting. I don't have to wait two hours to use my hands for them to dry (nail polish takes forever to become not-tacky). And I get to have cute designs!

My current Jamicure!

This new obsession led me to become a consultant! If you pay an arm and a leg for manicures and want to try something new, definitely check out Jamberry! You can find my shop, here:

Have a great weekend!

Monday, July 22, 2013

Oh... hello?

I haven't posted in a few weeks. We have some catching up to do! 

Since my last blog post, I... a job. Part-time teller. I'm really enjoying it, although it does keep me busy. Getting a job means getting a paycheck... which means I have money to spend!!

I've become addicted to Vera Bradley.

This particular bag is the Campus Tote in 'Ribbons'. I am in love with this purse! Next on the shopping list is Laura in Heather and a wallet. 

I've also become obsessed with hand-dyed yarn. So far, I've indulged in Candy Skein and Gnome Acres

This one is Candy Skein, Yummy Fingering, in the June monthly colourway 'Bubblegum Ice Cream'. I can't believe I only bought one of these skeins! 

And, yes, it is the Hitchhiker pattern. 

In a change of pace, I ordered worsted-weight yarn from Gnome Acres. This particular one is 'No Place Like Gnome'. I'm participating in the Gnome-a-long being hosted on Ravelry. 

I've also finished my Multnomah shawl since we've last talked!

It spent the day blocking while I was at work. I could not be happier with the results! One of my favourite things about crocheting/knitting is watching the item progress. Scrolling through my Ravelry project page for this shawl shows how it grew, and I think that's really interesting. I'm proud of myself for finishing my first knitted shawl!

Thank you for reading this long update! :) I'm hoping to blog more in the coming weeks... just need to find a consistent schedule! 

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Knitting Plans and Progress

It's Work-in-Progress Wednesday! I have a few amigurumi that have been in-progress for a few weeks months...

However, that's not what I want to talk about today! Knitting has taken a new lead in my life! I've wanted to learn to knit for quite some time-- I knew how to do knit stitch, purl stitch, increase, decrease, and all the other basics taught in the Craftsy Knit-Lab course. Actually finishing a knit project is a different story. But then I discovered a shawl pattern that was calling my name over, and over, and over! 

I've started a Multnomah shawl! 

Quite a bit of progress has been made since this picture was taken, but it's 12:34 in the morning... so this one will suffice! The yarn is Knit Picks' Stroll Tonal in 'Deep Waters'. So far, I'm really liking this pattern, yarn, and needles. 

In fact, knitting shawls might just be a new obsession. I've decided that my next shawl will probably be another Multnomah, but will be with Candy Skein yarn. Since FreshStitches posted her Lime Love shawl, Candy Skeins' bright coloured yarn has entranced me! Now that I can actually justify buying skeins for shawls-- I'm eager to finally purchase! I've set certain parameters before I can buy a skein, though:
1. My second paycheck (I start work on Monday). 
2. I finish this shawl. 
3. Tami has a random flash sale. 

Whichever of those comes first, I'm buying a skein (or, you know, two or four).

For more Work-in-Progress Wednesday posts visit Tami (yes, the same one mentioned above)'s blog! 

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Graduation Gifts

I haven't written a blog post in a while. Specifically, I haven't written a finished objects Friday post. So here we go!

This has been a week of graduations. Elementary schools are finishing up their end-of-the-year parties, high school seniors are graduating, and college kids like me have been done for a while. All of my cousins are relatively close in age, which means I have a high school graduation to attend on both sides.

Originally, I wasn't going to make them anything-- we're not particularly close... But I decided they needed something special! 

First to graduate was Cousin 1. He's leaving on his mission in the next few months, and I wanted to make something special for him that kind of signified that. (Plus, I had to finish a pattern test... two birds, one stone!)

The pattern is an upcoming design from Monster's Toybox. I'm not sure of an official release yet, but definitely keep an eye out! 

The second cousin is an incredibly talented singer and I wanted to give him something that signified his gift. Thus, I gave him the Gift of Music (get the pun? do 'ya??)

There were no non-applique patterns on Ravelry so I made the design up as I went. I'm considering typing up the pattern and listing it for free to anyone who wants to make it. The same pattern could also make the Pi symbol... or, individually, they resemble golf clubs. Diverse pattern! 

That's what I've been up to this week!

For more finished objects, check out Tami's blog: 

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Freedom and Fibers!

Hooray! Schooool's out for the summer! :) (You sang that, right?) 

To celebrate the beginning of my last school break, I took an adventure to a yarn store I've wanted to go to for months! Now that I've gone, I wonder what took me so long. Tempe Yarn & Fiber is amazing! They had tons of samples, including amigurumi ones:

They were both knitted and felted, but so cute! If I could have taken that hedgehog home, I would have. It's a lot more adorable in person (he doesn't photograph well). 

The yarn selection was also spectacular. They had a wide range of fun, vibrant yarns in a variety of contents: cotton, wool, acrylic, etc. Probably the most exciting find was a basket of yarn made from sheep wool in Arizona (my state). The tags say the the name of the sheep the wool was taken from. 

Needless to say, I bought a skein! One of the ones on the far right with texture. The wool was taken from a sheep named King. Awesome, right?!

That yarn will become, what better, a sheep! I'll use Monster's Toybox upcoming sheep pattern. A sheep made out of wool directly from a sheep!

These are my other finds. Bright green skein is Manos del Uruguay 100% Extrafine Merino Wool. The bottom skein was on clearance! It's Natural Fiber Mill by Lonesome Stone in the BFF Color Line; 100% wool merino. These will most likely become monsters. 

I highly recommend checking out Tempe Yarn if you're in Arizona! The workers and shoppers are incredibly friendly, the yarn selection is wonderful, and it's a great atmosphere. Definitely my new favourite Local Yarn Shop!

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Legos, Legos everywhere!

It's Work-in-Progress Wednesday, and you want to know what I'm working on?

Team projects.

I'm working on team projects. 

See that picture? Those are Legos. I spent three hours last night looking for one specific piece I needed to complete the piles for the team project.

The phrase should really be changed from "finding a needle in a haystack" to "finding that one specific Lego in an 18-gallon tub"! 

And this picture was taken AFTER I had done a lot of sorting, so that isn't even all the Legos. 

Still haven't found that piece yet. That's what makes it a WIP, right?

I also have a few crochet projects going on. Last night at Joann's, I found a skein of one of Red Heart's newest Super Saver colourways: Blacklight. I had to pick it up, and it's going to become a giant monster! 

However, there's also a new bag I'm working on. It needs to be lined with fabric and have handles attached. 

It should be a cute summer bag, though, once completed! 

What are you working on this week? 

Check out Tami's blog for more WIP Wednesday posts!