Saturday, January 31, 2015

the boogeyman

I have been on a mission to find a creative outlet for my oldest daughter that she enjoys. My youngest is easy to please in the creative arena. She will crochet, paint, draw, color, create in all kinds of ways that tend to leave me in awe. My oldest on the other hand, doesn't give herself enough credit when it comes to art. When she completes a project, she tends to view it through such critical eyes that she no longer sees the beauty or fun in it. So, whenever I come across something new or interesting, I always show her in hopes that it will be something that she just falls in love with. Don't get me wrong, she does absolutely love making jewelry on the Rainbow Loom. I think that has been a kind of Godsend for her lately. She creates such beautiful rubber band pieces that I look at and wonder just how she managed to put that thing together! I think though, that when she sees her sister so into artwork, she is constantly trying to put herself into that box, and when she looks through those critical eyes, she becomes frustrated. Last night I showed her a YouTube video with a person creating a Zentangle art piece. No offense to anyone that is an artist that flourishes in Zentangle, but to me, it is basically doodling that has been renamed. Doodling creates some amazing work, so I am definitely not knocking the art, just simply the name. Anyways, I showed her this video and she lighted up. She immediately wanted to Zentangle (see how that doesn't sound as cool?). I provided her some paper and a Micron pen, and she got started. She was having a blast! She created the family valentines for next month using Zentangles, and all kinds of pictures. Then she made Dad one, and approached him quite carefully, instructing him to set everything aside and really look at her picture. So he did as instructed. He sat up, took the tiny picture, which was a notecard, and looked. He stared here and there, touching his fingers to his chin as if in great though. My daughter was standing directly behind his recliner chair, hover, watching him. Her mouth was moving in nervousness, her fingers flinging to her mouth. Then she would move to the side of the chair, hovering a bit more, giving those facial expressions of nervousness and anxiousness. Now for me, I was across the room, thoroughly enjoying this display.  I found it so fun, and utterly interesting to see my daughter bouncing around so completely nervous to hear what he thought of her picture. I wondered why he was singled out for his approval to be so important, and decided it must be that my praise is so naturally and automatically given that she needed to hear it from him. After a few minutes, my husband announced that it looked something like the boogeyman dancing at the bottom of the ocean in seaweed, and my daughter sighed in relief! It of course was not the boogeyman dancing at the bottom of the ocean in seaweed, it was really just something abstract, but the fact that he saw the boogeyman dancing at the bottom of the ocean in seaweed somehow meant something wonderful in my daughter's ears. I think sometimes the verbal language between a father and daughter mystifies me, but watching them from across the room left no doubt about what was going on. She wanted some kind of approval for her artwork that only Dad could give.  

Friday, January 30, 2015

book talk: Death of a Pig

Well, I went back to our closing library for a third time. My daughters were really wanting to see what has become of the place we had spent so much time in over the past 7 or 8 years. I didn't think that they would really find any books, but I underestimated their enthusiasm! We collected many more books to take home for keeps, most of them now belonging to my girls. They now have books about shipwrecks, square dancing, canoeing, Georgia, North Carolina, Alaska, and a bunch of other random things that sparked their interest. What ever gets kids excited about books is fine with me! As for myself, I was incredibly happy to discover that Essay of E.B. White was still there, sitting atop a file cabinet in the back of the room. I had picked it up the last time, hesitated, and replaced it, thinking Letters by E.B. White were enough of him. I was so wrong! Once I started in his letters, I was gravely saddened that I had passed up the opportunity to have his essays. Needless to say, I grabbed it, along with a few others.
I started reading Essays of E.B. White last night in bed, and read Death of a Pig this afternoon. It was kind of sad to read about, as there are so many similarities between what he went through with his pig (of all things!), and what I go through with my daughter. It made my heart pick up pace while reading it. Now, don't get me wrong, I am not at all comparing my daughter to a pig, but comparing my inner turmoil to E.B. White's on some level, though we both did have poop at the center of our grief. His pig, apparently, was really constipated (or something along those lines), and ended up dying because they just couldn't find relief for him no matter what they did. He visited the pig often, searching for the pig's stool, coming up empty handed. Sadly to say, it is so similar to things I have experienced when it comes to my daughter. Her initial symptom of Crohn's Disease was being constipated for week straight. It is agonizing emotionally as a parent to be hovering, fingers and toes crossed, prayers on a constant loop, peering, searching, hoping for some positive change in the health of someone you love so dearly. Being that she is on Miralax daily for the past 7 years, there are many moments where I am thrown back into that whirlwind, emotions running wild all over again. All for the sake of poop. Even though E.B. White was searching for a pig's stool, a pig he had planned eat in the winter months, he had grown to love this animal on a level that was aching his heart to see it suffering. E.B. White wrote:

"I had assumed that there could be nothing much wrong with a pig during the months it was being groomed for murder; my confidence in the essential health and endurance of pigs had been strong and deep, particularly in the health of pigs that belonged to me and that were part of my proud scheme. The awakening had been violent and I minded it all the more because I knew that what could be true of my pig could be true also of the rest of my tidy world. I took a short drink of whiskey and then, although I wanted to go down to the yard and look for fresh signs, I was scared to."

This resonates so much with me. It is exactly how I felt, how I continue to feel. I grew up dreaming about having children, being surrounded by other children throughout jobs as a child care provider and receiving a bachelor degree in Elementary Education in the meantime. Soon after graduating, I married and became pregnant. I was always surrounded by the notion of an adult being able to keep a child healthy, by doing the responsible things that is expected. The nurturing things. Until I was standing before the hospital bed of my 8 year old daughter, listening to her crying out in so much pain, begging for me to help her, pleading to die, knowing there was nothing anyone around us could do, even for her pain. At that point, Crohn's Disease had been running wild for so long, she had several fistula that had broken skin. It had never occurred to me that people truly suffer on such a level. We are brought up to know medicine, and that doctors help. I hadn't known there were times where there are no medicines, no known help from doctors. I love that E.B. White used the word violent, because that is exactly what it feels like. My sudden awareness to all of these things was violent. Violent in my eyes, my ears, my mind, my heart, and most definitely in my soul. And you can't help but to have this violence spread out around you, bleeding to the other parts of your life. Seeing all things through this new awareness is overwhelming, and traumatizing on a certain level. I love that he used the word violent, because I never have in my expressions, and violent is a much better word than any others I have used. It captures that feeling that is so hard to explain. E.B. White is becoming one of my favorite word smiths. I am surprised by this, but loving it all at the same time. 

pajama

This post is in response to The One-Minute Writer prompt pajamas. I read it on the correct day it was posted, thought about it, and decided...eh. I don't have much to say about that, I'll pass. But, oddly, ever since, I have been thinking about my pajamas! So this morning I decided I had to write up at least something about pajamas to get it out of my mind. I think everyone has their favorite. Their favorite sweater, shirt, skirt, pair of jeans. That is that article of clothing that bring a surge of confidence, a smile, and an ahhhh, when you slip it on. I have a couple of pajama pants that do that. Two pairs that are the same exact pajama pants aside from their color. One is grey and one is an olive green. They are so comfortable! I don't know what that means about me, that my ahhh clothing is something worn only in the privacy of my own home. I'm sure it has some sort of a validation factor for me being an introvert or something. But I don't care. Those are the best pajama pants I have ever worn! 
And there, it is out of my system. I have successfully purged myself of expressing what my most comfortable pajama pants are like. My blog is temporarily complete!

Thursday, January 29, 2015

recurrent nightmares

This post was written in response to The One-Minute Writer prompt recurrent nightmares. I will say at this point in time, for the past several years, I have mainly been nightmare free. There are nights here and there that I wake up in the middle of the night ready to cry, clear the energy around me, and go back to sleep more peacefully. However, most of my life prior was spent with nightmares just about every night, even as a child. I always thought that if I actually put my dreams into novels, I could actually be a published author! My dreams were very horrific, filled with torture, and just really painful things. Most of my dreams didn't really phase me, I could wake up and go on with my day just fine. I guess I had just gotten use to them over the years. But whenever I would get into a conversation about dreams and took part by sharing what I had dreamed about, people would be gasping at my grotesque dreams in shock. Even my husband was always so appalled at how terrible my dreams were. I never really knew why I had them throughout that time. Then, one night I had another one, that was really very strange. Strange in the sense that when I awoke, I knew the dream meant something. It was, of course, filled with torture and just awful things that no one would want to see, but I also saw a place in the dream. As I awoke through the fogginess of sleep, more details of this place and situation flooded into my mind, as if I had awoken much too early and some part of me was trying to finish listing off the details I needed to be aware of. I got up and went on with my day, constantly being brought back to that dream with that gut feeling that that particular dream was important for me to unravel. I eventually sat down and began to do some research with the details hanging onto my mind, and discovered an awful historic event that I had previously been unaware of, where a lot of torture and experiments were involved on humans. There was only a couple of very old black and white photographs of some sort pertaining to this event that I found online, and was astounded to discover that one of them was the exact room I had been in, in my dream. At that moment, it all just clicked for me. It was an explanation for why I had been having all of those terrible dreams my entire life. Whether someone wants to spin it as a past life experience or my subconscious somehow being aware of that event during that time, I had experienced that on some deep soul level, and it was bleeding painfully through in my dreams. Once I realized this, all of those dreams stopped. It was pretty hard for me for a while after that to grasp what had gone on during that time, and breaks my heart to think about, but I am so glad to finally be aware and free from the constant cycle of those dreams. 

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

book talk: handwritten letters

Letters of E. B. White I've been thoroughly enjoying Letters of E.B. White, one of my library books for keeps finds. I found this one the second day I went back to browse, and for whatever reason, instantly became my most favorite in all I picked up. I started reading it right away, loving it so far. I think I am right, that reading books filled with personal letters is perfect for me. This is quite a revelation, and is actually so amazing for me to discover, as I have been in search of what type of books would fit who I am now, for quite some time. This was really not a type of book that I had ever considered prior to seeing it laying on the floor, mingled with many others. I just love hearing about and understanding another's life. I think I lack so much interaction and closeness with people in my life anymore, that I even find myself saddened at the hardness that seems to fill the distance between me and family. I am really enjoying getting to know E.B. White, who is not only the fabulous story teller we all know through Charlotte's Web, but is also such a beautiful and humorous writer in his personal letters. I am finding it fun to read through the mundane things in his life that he seems to relay in the most choice words to his friends and family. There is just something sentimental about reading his letters, something comforting.
I am finding this interesting that I would be so drawn to these types of books, as I have been really wanting a pen pal of sorts for about a year. I use to have a pen pal when I was younger and thought it was so much fun. The process of pondering on your current life, displaying it so nakedly upon a page for another to read, just for them. I think that type of interaction brings something into a relationship, whether it is a friend, family, or love, that you cannot get elsewhere. I sort of miss it. I recently asked a friend of mine if she wanted to be write letters back and forth. We were quite close over ten years ago, but we both married and went on our ways to life, and have just grown apart. I don't always think that social media keeps people close, in the sense of truly being a part of their life. To me, it feels more like we are all just bystanders, watching each others life go by, through the computer screen. My friend happily agreed, but it sadly is not really panning out for me to honestly say I have a pen pal. Maybe it will pick up in the future. I have also been writing my grandmother, who doesn't seem to be responding to my letters as much either. Where has the beauty of pen and paper gone?
Anyways, I am getting slightly off topic here. I am thinking that walking into that crazy library with books tumbling everywhere helped me to find myself in books again. Even though I have been in libraries a lot, all you see are the spines, and only if you go down the isle and specifically look at that spine. It was neat to walk in and see the covers of so many books sprawled out everywhere, I was truly able to browse and discover books that I would not have otherwise. The added notion of keeping the books for free allowed me to think differently, willing to take a chance and pick up the books that caught my eye, not having to weigh in the book's price. I have been pretty lost in the world of books for probably the past 5 years or so, so this is a bit mind blowing for me to actually find a book that I am excited about reading. And E.B. White is quite the introduction into the world of letters!

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

free crochet scarf pattern: puffed rows


Created by paperdollmom, Copyright 2015

Materials needed: Red Heart Yarn (or something similar) and an I hook

Puff Stitch: Yarn over and insert hook into desired stitch, pull a yarn loop through so that you now have 3 loops on your hook. Repeat this 3 more times, until you have 9 loops on your hook. Yarn over and pull through all 9 loops.

-Chain 168, DC in the 4th chain from the hook and across, chain 3, turn
-*DC in first stitch, Puff Stitch in next (repeat across, ending in a DC stitch). Chain 3, turn
-DC across, chain 3, turn
-Repeat row *, chain 3, turn
-You will be alternating rows of just DC across, and a row of DC and Puff Stitch (as explained in *), until you have 9 complete rows. The first and last will be rows of just DC across.
-Finish off.

*This pattern will create a scarf around 5 inches wide and approximately 48 inches long. You can easily adjust these dimensions by adding or leaving off rows, or adding or leaving off chains in the first step. It is important to note that the number of DC stitches across each row should be an odd number to allow for the alternate puff stitches and a DC at the end of each row.

book talk: Death of a Library, Still in Mourning

I decided to stop back at the base library again today, mainly to give a small gift of thanks to the woman who organized this giveaway (a scarf I crocheted), and to peek at that back corner I couldn't get to yesterday to see if it was more accessible. There was definitely a huge difference in the number of books available compared to yesterday. So many books are gone! How exciting! I like the thought of so many people on base curled up with a good book tonight. I am glad I went back, I was able to peruse through more biography books than I could yesterday. I decided that I think I would very much like to read books that are letters or journals written by others. I have not ever thought about reading those types of books before, and actually, when I was younger, I absolutely hated those types of books. But last night I started reading a book had gotten from the giveaway, filled with letters and diary entries written by a woman named Anne Morrow Lindbergh. Not sure exactly who she is? The beginning part I was reading through wasn't really super interesting, but it occurred to me that I think I would really love reading this kind of a book, though possibly one filled with more interesting things. So while I was at the library, I filled up a couple of more bags with books to take home to keep. I found 4 books for my husband, which I was super glad of. I wasn't really able to dig through any of the books I thought he might be interested in yesterday, as that area was really saturated with other military dressed in uniform, trying to find their own books to take. I got him a historical fiction book, The Pillar of Light, which takes place during the time of Joseph Smith I believe. I read it a long time ago, and thought he might enjoy it. I also found 2 books on WWII, specifically about what was happening in the air during that time, as well as a super thick, nice book filled with a bunch of poems, essays, stories, letters, anything that revolved around patriotism. I am hoping he will like them! I found nothing for either of my girls today. As for me, these are the books that caught my eye that I am feeling blessed to have and anxious to read:

book talk: Young Goodman Brown

The Short Story, 50 Masterpieces I read this short story last night, by Nathaniel Hawthorne. This is the same author that wrote The Scarlet Letter, and I was surprised to discover that this story, too, was heavily saturated with religion and sin. I found myself reading, pausing and thinking, whoa, what? It was a bit on the crazy side for me, crazy as in so deeply wrought with the torment of sinning within religion that it was slightly disturbing for me. Now, I will admit, that maybe I did not understand this story correctly. It seemed told all through symbolism in my view, which I might be understanding not in the way intended. However, I will go ahead and lay it all on the table. The story is about a man, Mr. Goodman Brown (Goodman), whose wife is name Faith. He has to go on some journey, which ends up being a walk in the forest with, I guess, the devil? And he is heavily persuaded to take worship. Throughout, there are lots of people in his life that are coming in and out of view all around him, worshipping. Then his wife is bought forth, I guess as some sort of sacrifice? Or they are going to force her to worship? It was all a bit strange for me. Then at the last minute, Mr. Goodman Brown told his wife to resist, and all the vision disappeared. He pretty much lived the rest of his life paranoid, not trusting all those same people that were a part of his life, I guess because he was thinking in the back of his mind that they are sinners.
I took the story to mean that one has to stick close to their faith, and not be so concerned about what others are doing with theirs. Mr. Goodman Brown became so engulfed in the idea that the people he knew to be God fearing people, were actually sinning behind closed doors. This began to impact his relationship with everyone, to the point of nothing sentimental being written upon his tombstone. I like a story written in this way, full of symbolic meaning, where you have to read between the lines and understand the story on a deeper level, especially when it is about something that is already deep. However, this particular story kind of freaked me out in a way. To be honest, I'm not sure why? I don't consider myself especially religious (though I have been in the past), but I do consider myself extremely spiritual. I seriously think it was an OCD part of me that was bothered. There were several parts worded just so, that kind of sent my mind into caged thinking and had trouble breaking it. Just the creepiness of being in a forest with "the devil" and the idea of being persuaded to do something ritualistic like that (as for some reason, ritualistic things tend to freak me out). It was a little too much for me. I do really like Hawthorn's writing style though. I remember reading most of The Scarlet Letter in the past, and I really loved it. I've actually been thinking of picking that book up again recently. As for this story, not my favorite!

Monday, January 26, 2015

crochet talk: upcoming project


I am working on a couple of things, trying to sort out some ideas in the area of crochet. I stopped in Michael's the other day and picked up two brown, one olive, and one black skein of yarn. Once I settle on how I am going to go about doing this new project of mine, I will share!

book talk: Lord Peter Wimsey and The Abominable History of the Man with Copper Fingers

I read the first short story in this book and loved it! I decided that since I got several anthologies, I will just write a post whenever I feel like it about a specific story, rather than an overview of the entire book. Why? Well, why not? I am actually surprised I liked the first story so much. Maybe I need to look more into short stories. I liked that I could sit down for a while and read a story in its entirety, and walk away feeling as though I accomplished something. Plus I've always been partial to writing short stories myself (though I haven't given reading others much of my time). I think I always viewed short stories as a lesser writing style when compared to novels. So I always focused on novels and aspiring to write one myself. I am actually starting to rethink these theories of mine. Anyways, onto Lord Peter Wimsey. First off, how can you not be intrigued by his name? His last name is Wimsey! It makes me chuckle to myself. He was not really a main character in this short story, as in being in the story's forefront, however, when he did make an appearance, it was very clear he was the man of the hour. He is portrayed with a very comical air, in my point of view. This specific story was basically a story that was relayed by a man in a man's cave parlor of sorts, to a room full of other men. They were all sharing strange occurrences, and this man named Varden told of his friendship with a strange man named Loder. I wont share too much, as it is a short story, but of course, Lord Peter Wimsey makes an appearance, displaying his clever detective work (which I am assuming is a main part of his character across all the novels and stories), saving the day...in a way. Even though it was a murder mystery type of book, I think it was handled tastefully. I am a huge fan of mysteries, but I have a hard time finding ones I enjoy reading, as so many are murder mysteries. I don't much care for murder mysteries personally, but I didn't mind this one, as the way it was written didn't make the story all about the murder. It was almost as if the murder was really a secondary detail.
I will say, I am surprised I liked it so much, as I normally don't connect with many books where the main characters are male. Great Expectations by Charles Dickens and The Music Box by Richard Paul Evans is probably the only two exceptions I can think of. Even though I love all TV and film that is Sherlock Holmes, I have read one of his stories, enjoyed it, but it did not pull me in to read more. Lord Peter Wimsey kind of reminds me of Sherlock in a way. I am actually finding myself anxious to read on in this book, and wishing I had kept my eye open for the novels at the library today! I did look up in their online category and see that they did have many of the Lord Peter novels, so if I go back later this week to see what is left of the books, I will look for them.

book talk: Lord Peter Who?

This is one of the books I was really interested in that I discovered at our base library while I was browsing for keeps. The cover was just striking, reminded me of Sherlock Holmes (which I was hoping to find, but sadly did not). It was getting kind of kicked around, looming out further into the path us book lovers created in that room filled with a massive piles of books. I quickly grabbed it up. It is in great condition, other than really, really yellowed pages. I did a bit of online looking, and it appears to be filled with short mystery stories, in which there are also novels available about the same character. This was my first pick of the pile to start reading, and so far I am still intrigued. I am surprised I have never heard of these books, especially since the cover states, "One of the greatest mystery story writers of the century." -Los Angeles Times. We will see!

Even more exciting, the inside of the book had this sticker  on it, apparently donated by a Mary Arenot. I, ironically, have the book in my hands to keep, exactly 30 years and 1 day after she donated it to the library. How fun is that? I love finding weird random books that I've never heard of, especially old ones, and even more so when they are British based books. I am hoping to enjoy it!


Death of a Library

Our base library closed many months ago which was so depressing. I loved having a library so close and easy to rent from. I have missed it! This week they have decided to allow us to come in and pick through all the books to take for free, as they are getting them ready for recycling. I was super excited when I found out about this, as they have a few books that I read from them that I have been debating on buying for myself. I quickly figured out I was not going to be able to find much of anything I was looking for, as the library was in shambles. The shelves were already dismantled, some books boxed up, most books lined up against the walls in really high stacks, none of the spines showing. Soon after people began rummaging through the stacks, they slid into more of a heaping pile of crazy. 
I mainly just continued to browse around the library and grabbing things that I thought might be a good read. The diggers in the room, those enthusiastically unearthing as many books from the piles as they could, gave me endless book browsing. I ended up leaving with 3 bags full of books (the bags kindly provided, and reusable), 36 books total. I wont go through them all in this post, but I will share my favorites that I found. I did grab quite a few animal nonfiction books for my girls. They now have books on gerbils, hamsters, guinea pigs, gorillas, and a few other random things. For myself, I was hoping to come across a few classics, poetry, biographies, and a specific Star Wars book. There was no Star Wars to be seen, classics were nonexistent, with poetry and biographies rare. I did hope to find an Emily Dickenson poetry book, and was happy when I discovered Final Harvest: Emily Dickenson's Poems on a stack of books. I was also hoping to find a biography on Willa Cather, and snatched up Willa Cather: Double Lives when I saw it teetering on another pile of books. Those are my absolute two favorite finds. Here are some of my other favorites:
The rest of the books for myself were pretty random books that I'm not sure if I will really like them or not. Overall, I am happy that I was able to go and browse and take some books home. My girls were enjoying looking through all their new animal books. I now have plenty of new books to dig into, though I definitely miss having our base library.

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

high inflammation markers

Well, I've been avoiding writing a journaling post since Monday, as my oldest daughter's GI appointment did not go quite as I was expecting. I was trying to avoid actually putting how her appointment went into words, because along with my words comes my feelings. If I think too long about it, it really makes me depressed. Unfortunately, her inflammation markers for her bowels are extremely high, still. It is so heartbreaking when you think she is doing so well, to find out her inflammation is still high, always high it seems. I know she is so incredibly blessed to not be having any symptoms of this, but it is still so heartbreaking for me. For her too, I am sure. It just reminds me how silent this disease actually is. That it can be wreaking havoc within, without her even knowing. She will be starting on steroids for 12 weeks to help bring down the inflammation more immediately, and then we will see where to go from there. Hopefully her inflammation markers will be in the normal range at that point, and stay there. She has been on steroids once before, right after her diagnosis. It was pretty rough for her. Apparently this is suppose to be a different type of steroids that will not enter through her blood stream, but will be taking a different route straight to her bowels, and supposedly this will mean that she will not have to experience all of those terrible side effects of long term steroids (night sweats, ice pick headaches, shaking, intense hunger). I still need to read up on this medication a bit more to see how true that information is, but she will be starting this journey again tomorrow morning. I feel so terrible for her, and as her mom, completely helpless. Whenever we hear those high inflammation markers, it is like a slap in the face that no matter what I do for her, how hard I try as her mother to keep her healthy, her body will continue to do its own thing, according to Crohn's Disease. It is hard to not feel like you are failing somehow, at something, but you just can't put your finger on what.

one skein infinity scarf free crochet pattern


Created by paperdollmom, Copyright 2015

Materials: one skein of Loop & Thread Impeccable Yarn and a size I hook

-Chain 180, slip stitch to the very first chain you made (making sure the chain is not twisted) to form a loop
-Chain 3 (first DC) and DC around, slip stitch to the top of the first DC to end round
-Chain 3 (first DC of new round), and DC around. Continue to repeat the rounds until you have a total of 5 rows (or more if you want your scarf to be thicker, however you will need more than one skein)
-On the sixth round, immediately start into the fun edging. Chain 3 (first DC), then 4DC in the first space between the first 2 DC stitches from the previous row. Drop stitch and pick up the top of the first DC stitch you just made, then add the stitch you dropped, and pull the yarn through both stitches. This is kind of like a popcorn, but less DC stitches, as I wasn't liking how the full popcorn looked.
-Chain 3, then do another altered popcorn stitch in the next 3rd space between the DC stitches in the previous row (so you are skipping 2 spaces, and crocheting in the third space). Then chain 3, and continue to repeat this pattern around.
-You can finish this off, then start this edging over again using the horizontal stitch that runs across the ends of each row instead of the DC spaces. You will continue to chain 3 between each  stitch you make, and skip 2 between each, exactly like the previous row of stitches. I ran this edging along the middle row of those horizontal stitches. Hope this picture helps to explain what I am talking about:
-Finish off! If you want to make it bulkier, you can crochet the edging around the top  row as well, but again, you will need a second skein of yarn. You could definitely make this scarf more full with a second skein, but adding maybe 1 or 2 more initial rounds, and crocheting more rows of edging, however, using the one skein is still beautiful and cozy!

Monday, January 19, 2015

book talk + crochet talk = pure awesomeness!

http://www.amazon.com/Around-Corner-Crochet-Borders-Instructions/dp/1603425381/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1421723111&sr=8-1&keywords=crochet+borders
Today after my oldest daughter's GI appointment, we went to Barnes and Noble! The children's hospital is in a town with an actual bookstore, so whenever she has an appointment that doesn't leave her feeling icky (which is rare, because most of her appointments are for Remicade), we stop in and pick out a new book. My youngest was excited to see such a large selection of Magic Puppy books, she absolutely loves them. My oldest ended up picking a beautiful book made by DK for beginner sewers (though it doesn't resemble a DK book at all). She wants to learn more about sewing and all that good stuff. The book goes over fabrics, tools, techniques, plenty of things for her to learn about! I found several books I really really wanted, but I limited myself to just one, Crochet Borders. It is more of shorter oblong book, beautiful bright colors, filled with 150 different border patterns (including corners for each). I was super happy to find this, as I am loving Hairpin Lace Crochet so much, but I am not pleased with the normal finishing off that requires tassels or just hiding the end yarns (which is a lot of end yarns with barely no where to hide them). I have been searching online and trying to come up with a way that I like better, with no luck. So I was very excited when I pulled this book off the shelf, as I think it is just what I need. I will have lots of way to experiment with to find something I like! The book is filled with so many beautiful borders, and the colors they chose to display them enhance how wonderful they look. It has written instructions as well as charts. The back of the book explains the symbols for the charts, and also explains how to crochet certain stitches. The beginning of the book explains how to make sure you crochet the border around the edge of your project in the best way. I absolutely love this little book and can't wait to test out some of these patterns!

Saturday, January 17, 2015

handwarmers free crochet pattern


Created by paperdollmom, Copyright 2015

Materials: Loop & Thread Impeccable Yarn and a size I hook

MAKE 2:
-Chain 24, slip stitch in the first chain made, chain 2 (counts as the first DC of the round), DC in the next stitch
-DC around for a total of 3 rounds, making sure at the end of each round to slip stitch in the top of the first DC and chain 2
-2 DC (3 including the very first chain 2 stitches of the round), chain 5, skip 5 stitches, DC the rest around, slip stitch in the top of the first DC, chain 2, DC in the next DC (you have created the row with the thumb hole)
*When you make a second one, I would create the thumbhole towards the end of the round rather than the beginning, that way both handwarmers will have the "seam" of the rounds going underneath the hands rather than on top.
-DC around for a total of 8 rounds after the thumb hole
-Finish off

*My hands are somewhat small, I am guessing, so if you need a larger handwarmer, I would just start the initial chain big enough to fit around the thickest part of your hand and wrist, and go from there. Need it longer or shorter around the wrist or fingers? Easily adaptable by adding rows or leaving rows off. The bones of this pattern is rounds of DC, each row the same, aside from the one with the thumbhole, which is simply chaining 5 and skipping 5. I would say it would even be easy to use for kids size warmers, just knock down the initial chain to fit the child and maybe lower the thumbhole to only 3 or 4 stitches. Have fun and stay warm!

crochet talk: new yarn

My family and I went out yesterday for a family day. We ate lunch at Applebee's and then went to the movies and saw that Paddington movie. My oldest daughter loves Paddington Bear, so she was excited to see this movie. In my opinion, I think they sort of missed the mark a little. Paddington Bear is playful and gets himself into a lot of trouble. He was in this movie, a little, but there was a serious undertone or plot in the movie that really took away from the playfulness of it. But my girls loved it anyways, and I was able to stay awake during it, well, most of it! On our way home I stopped at Michaels to get my oldest some more Rainbow Loom Bands, and to get my youngest some new water color paints and water color paper. I couldn't resist peeking at the yarn, especially when I had a coupon for 30% off total yarn purchase. I really wanted some new yarn, but it was hard to choose, as I wasn't sure what project I wanted to start. I ended up choosing these:
I really love variegated yarn, so I though these colors were beautiful. I did crochet (and already share on my blog) a dress and hat for a doll, but I am trying to come up with something different to make. I want to crochet something different other than toys, or toy related items.  I have never used this brand of yarn before, Loop & Thread Impeccable Yarn. I think it is thinner, kind of like Baby Softees, but definitely not as soft. The texture feels more like the regular Red Heart Yarn. I like working with the thinner yarns though, so I think I will like them.
I am still working on a baby blanket for my niece who is pregnant, but it is slow going. I am using shell stitches in the pattern, but it is hard to see with the variegated yarn. I love it, but blankets are not my favorite things to crochet! I did start learning Hair Pin Lace Crochet right before I decided to start on this blanket. I had made a scarf and a couple other things. I really really loved it, but I need to explore and figure out what all I can do with it. I may go back to that with these new yarns and come up with something pretty!

Cutie Pops doll dress and hat free crochet pattern



Created by paperdollmom, Copyright 2015
 
*I believe this should also fit Moxie dolls. Their clothes seemed to be interchangeable.
 
Materials: Loops & Threads Impeccable Yarn and a size I hook

DRESS
-Chain 19, DC in second stitch from the hook
-DC across the row, chain 2, turn
-Complete 4 more rows of DC across, making sure to chain 2 and turn at the end of each
-DC across while decreasing 1 stitch 3 times, chain 2, turn
-DC across while decreasing 1 stitch 2 times, chain 2, turn
-DC across while decreasing 2 stitch 2 times, chain 2, turn
-DC across
-Slip stitch down the back of the dress to close it
-Finish off

* Her arms will fit through the DC stitches.

HAT
-Chain 30, slip stitch in first chain made to form a ring (also counts as first DC)
-DC in the next stitch and around (30 DC)
-Slipt stitch in the top of the first DC (the one you made by chaining 2)
-DC around
-Repeat DC around until you have a total of 3 rounds of DC, slip stitch into the top of the first DC, chain 2
-2 DC, decrease 1 stitches, [3 DC, decrease 2 stitches], repeat [ ] around, slip stitch to top of first DC, chain 2
-DC in next stitch, decrease 1 stitch around, slip stitch into the top of the first DC, chain 2,
-Combine 2 stitches all the way around until you can close up the top of the hat
-Finish off

Thursday, January 15, 2015

a letter to my younger self

I was Google searching journaling prompts late last night before bed, and one of the questions gave me pause. What would you tell your teen self? I've been pondering on this since I read it, wondering exactly what I would tell my teen self. Of course, one immediately thinks on the ways of life and the world, and what you could share to your younger self that would prevent heartache or the things you have done that have pulled you so far from where you needed to be, that finding the light to make your way back was a challenge you want to bypass. For myself, I don't think there is anything I would change or do differently, as I was born with a very high standard of morality and value instilled in my soul, that I would cry at the thought of doing wrong. So, that means I did not drink underage, I did not even really drink of age. I never even tried smoking a cigarette or any other kind of drugs. I went to college right out of high school; I always strived for the best grades. I think that most of my challenges I experienced in life that could use loving guidance prior have occurred as an adult. What would I say to my younger self about that? Here is what I came up with, in letter format, because that's just what I would get:

Dear Me,
You are a strong young woman that can truly tackle anything that arises in your life, no matter how deeply it cuts. Never forget that. Always listen to your inner guidance; listen to your gut feelings and set aside anything in your life that teaches differently, because that inner guidance is from the Divine, speaking just for you. Nothing, and I mean nothing, is impossible. You will one day find yourself staring at the world with new eyes, eyes that will leave you raw from the sight, eyes that will never see the same again, but that is okay. It is this new sight that will lead you to the understanding that anything is truly possible, and that there is more truth around us than most acknowledge. It can take some time to see, but never doubt that it is there, waiting. Love matters. Love is powerful, and love matters. Love will be your guiding force, sparking your inner soul's journey. There will be moments that feel like all is lost, but remember that love. The love you hold for others, the love others hold for you, the love you have for yourself, and the love from the Divine that embraces your every moment. Stay strong, be strong, and never forget that you are strong. Your life will be beautiful, always remember to see it. You can't? Look harder. It is there, always.  
Love,
Me

I feel like if I was to write a letter to myself, it would be on pretty heavy topics, as that is where I would need help, but it would be about things I would not want to say to my younger self. So, even though I think this letter may be pure nonsense to my younger self (and I suppose possibly to others?), I would keep it and read it frequently (I just know I would). Then when specific challenges arise, I would know the right things to tell myself, those inner thoughts that I should put on a loop to help instill strength and remind me of beauty, and maybe help me feel a little less lost in the world. And to be honest, this is probably a letter I could even read now, whenever I am feeling like I have been lost amidst the fog of the world.

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

clean

This journaling post was created in response to the word prompt clean by The One-Minute Writer. I immediately take this prompt very literal. This is a pretty heavy word for me, being that I suffer from severe contamination OCD. I know a lot of it was triggered because I have a daughter with a compromised immune system, instilling a deep fear of coming across a random germ that will wreak havoc on her. So, clean is my best friend. However, my OCD has gone beyond that point, making it hard for me to actually clean. I feel like it is one of those things where the cause and effect are both one in the same, and therefore, you cannot win. Which, of course, is the natural confusion and illogical workings of this disorder coming to light. My specific (though undiagnosed but very obvious to myself, down to about every symptom), is Contamination OCD, which means touching something germy isn't the only alarming notion in my mind, it is actually based off of proximity to that object. For example, if someone was standing in the middle of a room with a disgustingly dirty sock, dripping of nastiness, I could not walk into that room, and would probably have to clean everything in the entire room due to its contamination from the icky sock. And then shower and wash my hair, several times. Anything dirty related triggers this for me, such as garbage, dirty dishes, dirty clothes, and things that touch the floors outside of my home (mainly because I now associate floors with childrens hospital floors, which I internalize as germ infested).
Even though this disorder can be utterly debilitating, I am actually doing pretty good lately. I take a multivitamin that helps me, and I also meditate and do energy work on myself regularly to help bring down the severity. I am currently working past quite a few of my regular "routines" (which I wont get into in this post, I do want to seem half way normal!). The simple fact that I am starting to change some deeply rooted routines is a huge thing for me, and major progress. It is a disorder that is very hard to explain, as it is, very illogical. I think most assume that if you explain your line of thinking, why you suddenly have to sanitize half the room, that they will get it. The truth of it is, I know that before it even comes out of my mouth, it doesn't make sense. But that is how it is.
Back to the word clean. I love clean. Clean is a solace in my world of being hypersensitive to germs. Being home, showered, and in comfy clean pajamas, is my favorite thing. Throw in a nice hot bowl of oatmeal (my new obsession, I have no explanation) or a hot cup of tea, and I am in heaven! Being clean and around clean things means a calm frame of mind, free from anxiety.  

water color painting

Yesterday I had some fun water color painting. I had tried to learn to water color a few months ago, probably around October or November. My main purpose for trying was to introduce it to my girls and hopefully open up a world of creating for them. I noticed that whenever I suggested they water color (simply because the paints are easy to come by, cheap, not as messy as other paints, and we already own a TON), they always said there isn't much you can do with them. So my mission was to show them there is a lot you can do with a simple palette of water color paints! I watched some videos, tried some techniques, and created some decent sun setting pictures, which did get my girls using their creativity and giving these paints a try. They have been painting nonstop for a few months now, creating wonderful pictures (way to go mom!). So, yesterday I decided to take a few tips from how they paint and give it a go, and these are two paintings I created:
Both of my daughters say this is their favorite one I created, a lovely fox sitting and watching a sunset.

This is my favorite one, I had Minnie Mouse in mind! I think now that I am getting the hang of it and starting to create pictures that I actually like, I may continue on and see how far I can go with this new endeavor. Plus, it is always fun to have something to do with your kids.

Monday, January 12, 2015

book talk: 2 new books from Barnes and Noble

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/2363196.The_Complete_Idiot_s_Guide_to_World_Mythology?from_search=true
My daughters' dance class was canceled today, and since we had to go out anyways, I thought a trip to a nearby town with a Barnes and Noble store sounded like fun! We turned it into a fun family day with Dad and enjoyed a lunch at Red Robins, then visited the bookstore and their local Disney store. This was such fun for us, as we don't have any of those 3 places in our own town. I searched and searched for something to catch my eye in Barnes and Noble, and was just not having any luck. I am really stuck. Not stuck in the normal sense of  reading, but really stuck about what books hold my interest anymore. I am trying to stray from novels to other types of books, such as anthologies or nonfiction. I eventually decided I would like a book on folklore or mythology; I was searching for a Celtic folklore book specifically, but wasn't too impressed with the several I found. I decided on The Complete Idiot's Guide to World Mythology. I'm sure it will be very brief in all of the explanations and information, as it is quite a big topic with a book that doesn't quite match up, but I figured it would be good to skim over all the different cultures and find one I would want to learn more about. I sort of love Dummies books, but as I couldn't find one dealing with folklore or mythology, an Idiot's guide will have to do. My husband and I decided that the bookstores should really have a section that is specifically for all the Dummies books, for people like me that just want to search through them and decide what new thing I want to learn about. That would definitely be my favorite spot in a bookstore. Instead, I wander around aimlessly, looking for that bright yellow and black spine in different sections of the store, trying to discover my next new interest. Maybe online shopping for Dummies book is the best way to go?
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/15720987-the-twilight-saga?from_search=true
I also happened upon The Twilight Saga: The Complete Film Archives, which I was curious about. The Twilight book was sealed up, so I couldn't tell what it was like inside, but it was marked down to only $9.99 from $39.99, so I figured why not! I am glad I did. It is one of those types of books that come across more as a scrapbook than a traditional book, with several pretty envelopes with extra things inside them, photos stuck in different places. There is even signed posters in one envelope. I think it will be fun to sit and read through. I am looking forward to enjoying both of these books!

Sunday, January 11, 2015

everything is awesome!

This week seemed to crawl by, super slow. The girls started back into their school curriculum and my hubby went back to work. It always seems tough getting back into the normal week routine after having some time off. I really enjoyed having everyone home, able to spend time together without any responsibilities pulling us in all different directions. Friday was my oldest daughter's Remicade Infusion, which means a drive to the childrens hospital, an IV, and her sitting in a bed for several hours receiving her medicine. For whatever reason, that even went by incredibly slow! I believe she was already in the bed watching a movie with the IV in for 45 minutes before they even started the Remicade. This weekend was an indoor weekend for us. We usually try to stay indoors the weekend my oldest has her Remicade, to allow her to relax and to stay away from germs and viruses that might be going around. My husband worked this weekend, so it was my girls and I. We watched a few fun movies, the most recent being The Lego Movie, and I just have to say, everything is awesome!

book talk: a Celtic second hand find

The Celtic Quest in Art and LiteratureI came across this book, The Celtic Quest, by Jane Lahr and Greg Wakabayashi, in my local bookstore, which is mainly sells used books. This was a used find, costing me only $12, with the label stating the publishing price was $50. So I think I got a wonderful deal! It is an oversized hardcover book, more in the style of a coffee table book (approximately 10"x 10"). I am not generally a fan of gigantic books. I think they make for awkward reading, and they just aren't practical to take with you anywhere to read. I don't even find them easy to read in bed at night. However, when I found this book I could not resist. It is so beautiful! It says on the cover that it is An Anthology from Merlin to Van Morrison, so it is filled with poetry, prose, and folklore, accompanied with outstanding photographs and artwork.

It is such a beautiful book to sit down with and just enjoy. I love reading the poetry, learning the folklore, and simply just browsing through all the artwork displayed within the pages. This has become a book that I turn to frequently.
Have you ever purchased a used book that goes against your normal liking, and found it to be a hidden gem?
 

Saturday, January 10, 2015

book talk: Mrs. John Dashwood

I have once again started reading Jane Austen's novel Sense and Sensibility. One of the BBC versions of this movie is one of my favorite movies. I love this story, however, I have yet to get through the original novel. Why? Jane Austen has a bit of a different style. I generally love a writer who flourishes with detail, adjectives, and anything extra that just helps to make me feel like I am there. Jane Austen is a no nonsense writer. We get barely any details, mostly written as a narrator with some talking between the characters. It is slightly jarring for me at times, and feels a bit dry. However, her stories are really wonderful tales, filled with a lot of well worded quotable moments. I would love to get in a place where I can read through them all and appreciate her style of writing more. So, once again, I am giving Sense and Sensibility another go. Within the first few chapters, we meet Mrs. John Dashwood, the wife of the man who is inheriting Norland Park. She is a bit of a character to take in, and I always find myself slightly laughing inside when I read her antics. She is such an incredibly manipulative, selfish person, you almost can't fathom her. Mr. John Dashwood's father, while on his deathbed, asked him to please be sure to care for his current wife and daughters. If you know about that time period, women inherited basically nothing when there was a male heir available, no matter how distant. So when Mr. and Mrs. John Dashwood swoop in and take over Norland Park while the widow and his daughters are mourning within, Mr. John Dashwood begins to ponder how to fulfill his father's last wish. At first, he is happy with giving them each a substantial amount of money to help them settle in their new life. Then Mrs. John Dashwood begins her manipulation, weaving this long elaborate thinking that winds Mr. Dashwood down a path of craziness!
Such as:
"...he could not have thought of such as thing as begging you to give away half your fortune from your own child."
 
"The time may come when Harry will regret that so large a sum was parted with."
 
"...people always live for ever when there is any annuity to be paid them; and she is very stout and healthy, and hardly forty."
 
And finally delivering this last speech, convincing her husband it was unnecessary to gift his stepmother and stepsisters any money:
 
" ...I am convince within myself that your father had no idea of your giving them any money at all. The assistance he thought of, I daresay, was only such as might be reasonably expected of you; for instance, such as looking out for a comfortable small house for them, helping them to move their things, and sending them presents of fish and game, and so forth, whenever they are in season. I'll lay my life that he meant nothing farther; indeed, it would be very strange and unreasonable if he did. Do but consider, my dear Mr. Dashwood, how excessively comfortable your mother-in-law and her daughters may live on the interest of seven thousand pounds, besides the thousand pounds belonging to each of the girls, which brings them in fifty pounds a year apiece, and, of course, they will pay their mother for their board out if it. Altogether, they will have five hundred a year amongst them, and what on earth can four women want for more than that?- They will live so cheap! Their house-keeping will be nothing at all. They will have no carriage, no horses, and hardly any servants; they will keep no company, and can have no expenses of any kind! Only conceive how comfortable they will be! Five hundred a year! I am sure I cannot imagine how they will spend half of it; and as to your giving them more, it is quite absurd to think of it. They will be much more able to give you something."
 
It always amazes me how crazy manipulative this woman is! Why, of course they should need no money to help out. If one hasn't money for anything, no money is required for anything else! In modern times, can you imagine one not ever needing the use of a vehicle? Or anything extensive to clean your house? And have no need for company? This cracks me up that she is basically saying, they will be poor, so they wont need money for anything. What?! What I find even more hilarious is that her husband immediately falls in line with her thinking, confirming her thoughts to be true. How do two people in one room have such a lack of humanity for others, to weave such a web of absurdity to justify their desires? Insanity!

Thursday, January 8, 2015

best of

This journaling post is in response to The One-Minute Writer prompt for today, "best of". More specifically, what has been the best part of 2015 for me so far? This first week of 2015 has been filled with a lot of preparing for my oldest daughter's medical needs. She has several upcoming appointments that require a bit of things to do on my part, such as getting referrals in order and double checking appointment times. So that means a lot of phone calls and waiting on the line. On top of that, I also had to put together a stool sample that will check for inflammation markers in her bowels, as for whatever reason, her blood work is not always truthful when it comes to that. With having severe Contamination OCD myself, that is quite a challenge. I am glad to have finished that on my to do list (as it was causing me a lot of anxiety just thinking about having to do it), and await the results. So, there really hasn't been a lot going on during this first week for me to ponder about. When these times arise that are saturated with a lot of medical things to be done for my daughter's health, I sort of just slip into survival mode and try to get everything done, and find my mind more in the stress and worry zone. My daughter has her Remicade Infusion tomorrow, which means yesterday and today is time to pump her up with water so that the IV goes in smoothly and the blood is easy flowing for her blood work. We have also been dealing with some other Crohn's issues this week for her that have me a tad worried, hoping it will all pan out and not need anything further (such as a doctor appointment, x-rays, and anything else). Back to the original question, I did finally receive my new 5-year journal in the mail, and I have been diligently recording a positive moment from each day within. I know it is such a small thing, but it really has me excited to take it out at night before bed and ponder what special moment I want to record in the book. I am excited to see the book continue to fill up with moments that I will be able to look back on and re-read. I have never really kept any sort of a journal at all, as I really dislike the idea of having a book filled with my personal thoughts. I just don't like it! However, I am very in love with this idea of just recording a special moment for each day in a set up like this journal. It is perfect for me, and I feel is starting my new year out in the right direction!  

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

House

I caught a mini marathon of the TV show House yesterday. I was browsing through the channels, finding nothing good to watch, but with an inner need to find something interesting. I eventually found myself landing on a channel showing the show House over the next several hours following. My husband came home from work and settled in his chair, joining in the House fun! I thought I would record a few thoughts about what I think about this show overall, in general. We have watched this show a lot, and I do love it. I don't think I have ever truly watched the show in the order it was created, nor had I ever followed along in a current season. I believe I have only watched the shows as repeats or marathons whenever I catch them on TV, and every time I do, I am reminded how much I absolutely love this show. I spend quite a bit of time in children hospitals and doctor offices. The pharmacy we go to knows my daughter by name. The medical system is no stranger to us. We have had terrible doctors, more than our fair share, and I just admire the character House. I love that he is written so sarcastic and grumpy. I love that he is such a sour person, but yet so smart and just does his job, saving so many people. I love how every episode is about someone new, with some unknown ailment, that usually ends with at least part of a happy ending as House pieces the puzzles together and treats them. The answers are found in the end by the team of doctors' dedication, which is pleasing for me to see. It took my daughter's GI doctor 1 whole year to diagnose her with Crohn's Disease, even though I suggested that could be the culprit on her very first visit (to which the doctor responded with a laugh). The show is filled with so many wonderful characters, from Cuddy to Thirteen, to Chase. The show really makes me wish so many more doctors were more passionate about what they do, to actually get done what needs to get done so the patient can heal. I really don't have anything terrible to say about the show overall. No bad or strange thing comes to mind about this show, unless you want to get into the strange activities and demeanor of House himself!

memories of crocheted blankets

Over Christmas break I have decided to crochet a niece of ours a baby blanket. She recently found out she is pregnant, and what better gift that a handcrafted warm blanket for the new little one? If you know me, you have already heard me ramble on about how I despise crocheting blankets. They are long projects that I just don't have the patience for. I have literally made only 2 blankets in my crocheting history (which is approximately 13 years), and both blankets were baby blankets, one for each of my own daughters. So, I have been working on this blanket daily, and most times I am thinking to myself....why did I start this again? Not because I don't want to make our niece a beautiful gift to show our support, but because, it is a blanket that seems to take forever. Aside from that, I have also been reminiscing about the other 2 blankets I made. It is strange how our mind can associate certain things to a specific memory, one that floods over you so strongly. I remember crocheting my first blanket, which was actually my very first crochet project ever, how I even learned to crochet. I remember trying to get it all just right, working with the soft pastel colors (pink, green, blue, yellow), and how it felt having my large baby belly while I did so. The memory makes me smile. It is just one of those things, as a mother, that will always warm my heart to know that I took the time to create something special like that for each of my daughters. That I was putting myself into something for them before they were even born. It is kind of symbolic of a mother's love really, a mother knitting, crocheting, or sewing baby booties, blankets, or hats. It is that first initial gesture so many moms make to express their budding, long-lasting love for their child. Not just for myself, but for all the mothers that take part in something similar, it is really a precious thing. I am finding it quite a blessing to be thinking about every time I pull out my niece's baby blanket to work on. If you have any children, did you crochet or knit your children something before they were born? Or did you do something completely different that expressed your love prior to their birth? Do these memories bring forth any emotion for you?

start

The One-Minute Writer gave the word prompt "start" today. I think it fits pretty appropriately for the beginning week of the new year. I think it immediately puts ones mind to thinking about what they want to start doing, not doing, or being this year. For me that is without a doubt, journaling. I mentioned in a previous post that I really struggled this December trying to understand what I wanted or needed to start in 2015 that would help me. I kept thinking in the back of my mind that I just wanted to focus on writing. This was extremely frustrating for me, as I had no desire to dig into poetic writing, stories, flash fiction, or anything of the kind. So than why was I consistently feeling I needed to focus on writing? It made no sense to me. Throughout my life I have mainly seen writing as a creative process, with a finished piece in the end. There is a ton of poetry, short stories, and flash fiction works here on this blog to prove it! Once I started to ponder the idea of simply just focusing on journaling, it started to make more sense for me. I have started journaling (or blogging) this week, creating new topics or memes for myself (to keep dedicated), and I am already seeing the wonderful changes it is producing within myself. I think over the past several years, I haven't felt like I had a place in my life to share my thoughts on topics that seem to haunt my mind. I did, of course, through my poetry during certain times, however my messages were always received much differently by readers (which is, of course, the nature of poetry), but that left me feeling unheard in many ways. On top of that, I am a deeply sensitive person emotionally, am a person that is also sensitive to energies, and an empathy on some level (that I choose not to explore further to help separate myself). All of these things tend to have me swarming with thoughts and emotions that I struggle with releasing, which causes a lot of strife within. So, this year, I will start journaling to help clear myself and to put my mind and body in a better place.

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

2014 Tag

I am still a little in that stage of reminiscing about the previous year, and thinking about the new. I discovered this tag on Yet Another Perdiod Drama, and thought I would ponder these questions a bit:

What did you do in 2014 that you’d never done before?
I had a blast in Florida. We have been to Disney World once before, but this second family vacation there this past summer was AMAZING. I enjoyed the first visit several years ago, but I think with my daughters a little older, it allows me as the mother to enjoy what is happening around me a little more, as opposed to be focusing so much on helping them with every little thing. I was able to just simply have fun with both my daughters and my husband. One of my favorite all time moments...that lasted a week!

Did you keep your New Years’ resolutions, and will you make one this year?

Disney's Frozen

Frozen. It seems to be the movie of the year, at least in every child's mind, which means it infiltrates the lives of all the adults of the world as well. I was so excited when I realized this movie was about the ice queen, which was basically when I was seated in the movie theater watching it for the first time. I am a lover of fairy tales, and the ice queen fascinates me. I absolutely love that this movie's theme that tops all others (for me at least) is sisterly love and loyalty. What a great value to instill within families! Anna stood by her sister no matter what, stuck up for her no matter who was against her (was there anyone that wasn't against her?), and tried her very hardest to help her sister as best she could. That is 100% what family is about. That kind of love trumps all others and never seems to fade, even when Elsa refuses Anna's help, Anna is still there to save Elsa's life, without hesitation. Olaf was cute and funny, comic relief amidst the serious undertones of the film. Kristoff was my favorite character in the film. Lonely, sarcastic, quirky. I mean, he talks for his reindeer, how do you not love that? He did not, however, beat my love for Flynn Rider, my all time favorite male Disney character from their animated films.  Kristoff did come in very close though! All of these things, along with the fun songs (that I have heard on repeat in my house for the past several weeks) is what makes this movie great for me. Now, even though I have all of these wonderful things to say about the film, there is a lot about this movie that bothers me. First off, I just cannot wrap my head around how this movie has taken off to such heights as it has, when compared to Disney's other animated movies released in the past several years. How is this movie better than Tangled? For me, there is a lot wrong with this movie that bothers me that seems to be overlooked by so many. Here it goes:

Sunday, January 4, 2015

I knew she didn't kill Abe

She looked up, and her blue eyes locked on to mine. They held confusion and fear. "I didn't kill him!" she gasped. "You have to believe me!"
This is from The One-Minute Writer, prompting readers to finish this story:
 
     I knew she didn't kill Abe. Even though I could see in her eyes that she deeply believed she did, I knew she didn't. Even Abe knew she didn't. I was amazed I was able to refrain from rolling my eyes.
     I assured her that everything would be okay, that I would take care of the "mess", and ushered out of the apartment. I stood over Abe in pure disgust, taking in all the blood mixed among the dinner half prepared. An accident in the kitchen, of course.
     I kicked him fiercely in the side as he began to stir. I reached down and pulled out the knife that was embedded in his chest, watching the wound heal before my eyes.
     His eyes popped open as he leapt to his feet, brushing pieces of carrots and broccoli from his suite jacket.
     "Your death? That is how you break up with her?" I asked incredulously. Not that I am at all surprised.
     "Eh, she was a bit on the crazy side, it was bound to happen at some point," Abe playfully grinned from ear to ear, revealing the fangs he managed to keep hidden from her for the past four months.
     I turned to walk out the door wondering why I even agreed to stop by.
     "You gonna leave me to clean this up myself?" He asked in a panic.
     "Yep, and you might want to hurry before she returns and finds your love rekindled."