After the Storm ends

After the Storm ends

It’s been a crazy few weeks. Ups and downs. A lot of heartache, anxiety, excitement, and complacent moments. I’ve been feeling very invisible and reclused to say the least.

One of the main reasons for the lack of blogging is we are moving! We sold our home and found a new home closer to the main city. That’s where we came from originally and we are quite excited to be moving back. Our new location is great because we so close to all the shopping centres, groceries, stores, food where we can just walk! I’m excited to take my son out and have our daily walks to the mall do some shopping without having to load him up into the car and drive a distance just to get some fun in. My husband is also very very close to his work (7-10 mins to be specific) in comparison to his 45 min drive he is doing now. Defintely a gas and time saver. With the record-breaking price of gas prices that has come to Vancouver these days, you have no idea how much of a relief this whole short distance driving is.

We get to be closer to our families and our friends. LOL no one has to be secretly (or some have outwardly express their complaints) about how far they have to drive to come and visit us anymore. We are going to be in the centre of everything now and it’s going to be so nice to be back home. Sure it’s busier but nothing beats being back home.

We are downsizing though but you know what? We are okay with it. Thinking about which areas of the current home we spend most time in … it’s exactly the same as if we were in our new place. The benefits of this new place is that this condo is brand new, so no one has ever lived here before. Brand new appliances, and there is air conditioning in every room!!! We don’t have to be confined to just our bedroom anymore when the summer heat comes along. And there’s no more stairs!! No more worrying about my son falling down stairs. No more having to run up and and down the stairs when checking up on my son during his naps.

AMIDST ALL THIS HOWEVER, a tragedy has fallen on our family. My father-in-law passed away late last month and it was just a devastating blow. I don’t want to go into many details about this as it’s hard to talk about but I will say that we miss him and love him very much. Actually my husband thinks that this whole opportunity in selling our house and moving closer to the city was a part of his dad’s divine plan as he always wished we lived closer to him and his mom. He always wished that if he were to go, that his son would help watch over his mom too. So I don’t know. Maybe it was through his spirit and love that he helped us sell our house and be in another beautiful home with better opportunities and a fresh start. We just wished that he was there when we moved so that we are close to him. But I guess he’s always close by. He’s watching over us. I’m sure he’s happy that we are moving back regardless.

So … like I said. Ups and downs. We are moving a few weeks so I’m still busy packing everything. I pack and my husband brings them over to the condo. I’m not fond of the packing process as it’s hard sometimes to part with certain things. One advice I have though for people who are moving and packing: SERIOUSLY THROW AWAY CRAP YOU DO NOT NEED!! I learned this lesson when we moved to this current place. We had sooooooooo much shit and it was just a nightmare trying to pack all of it. We ended up throwing up a lot of stuff and donating even more. We had some opportunities to sell some good items as well. I am thankful for ALL of this because now that we are moving again, I learned to not accumulate any more crap and now it’s such AN EASIER time to pack. We have wayyyyyy less boxes and the fact we are downsizing is not too much of a problem. We did have to sell some furniture though but it’s okay because the proceeds is helping with the costs of moving like the professional cleaning, movers and to buyer newer furniture to fit the new look of our new place. I guess you learn things the more times you move HAHA.

But this is a new start for us. We have had a rough year last year and with the passing, we just need a new light. We want a new beginning for us as a family. I hope that this the start of something great since usually when there is a rough storm, there is always a rainbow and a calm breeze waiting at the end of it. This is will be our rainbow.

Here is to 2018.

Routine Boredom

Routine Boredom

I currently have a lot of time on my hands and sometimes I don’t even know how to deal with it. I go through cabin fever sometimes and I have to keep myself busy but there’s really only so much I can do sometimes.

I play with my son.
I feed him.
I crochet.
I watch tv.
I play with my son some more.
I feed him again.
I put him to a nap when he gets tired.
I browse the internet for crochet inspirations or other hobby inspirations.
And it goes on and on, the same cycle every single day.

I’ve watched more tv and Netflix than I would like to admit and I am gaining quite a bit of weight since all I do otherwise is eat. And I hate it. I’m already overweight enough as it is, I don’t need to add more to it.

I have been doing a lot of crocheting and drawing inspirations for patterns and projects I can do since I want to eventually start my own etsy shop sometime. I started my own instagram account so far, WickedfulKnots at least.  That’s a start LOL.  I have been trying to do do a lot of research and I am ready to start crocheting away on different hats and scarfs.  I actually ordered some yarn from an online store that is actually based here in the lower mainland so shipping is pretty quick!  Now if only they would deliver the damn package to my door instead of the community mailbox.  Apparently, they left a notice card for me to pick it up at some post office.  Ugh.  I just wanted my yarn now LOL. I am pretty excited to start as I have a few ideas on how I want some designs to look.  I’m obviously going to start simple and I want to see how they actually turn out before I think about posting them up for sale.  I’m planning on maybe giving away a few just so I can get some feedback on them first too.  Too bad I didn’t do this around Christmas time, that would have been a perfect time to give crochet clothing LOL.  Oh well.

Anyways, that’s mostly been my days.  I mentioned that I’ve been trying to do some cleaning too.  I’m trying to clean and organize and purge.  We actually might be moving so if we do, this would be a good time to figure out what stuff we have we can keep, throw away or donate.  Purging feels great sometimes you know.  I feel lighter since there’s less clutter and less mess.  It’s weird how it affects me physically and mentally sometimes because of it.  Plus, if we do end up moving, well there’s less crap to move.  That’s a really good bonus.  Moving is hard already and having to load too much crap out and in is just a pain in the ass.  I’ve already had to go through a bunch of my son’s stuff and get rid of some old toys he doesn’t play with anymore.  I’ve put in boxes old clothes that doesn’t fit him and that he barely wore and I will give those to my sister-in-law since she has a little baby boy right now.  If I can get a head start in boxing and slowly clearing out the crap, then I’m happy because I know the feeling of having to rush packing things and it is NOT fun.

 

Moss Stitch Cup Cozie

Moss Stitch Cup Cozie

I have really been obsessed with crocheting lately.  Officially caught the crochet bug.  I’ve been learning lots and watching tons of youtube videos and trying to put together different things in hopes that I create some new original pattern but nothing yet.

So I still had some yarn left after though after making my scarf on my last post and I decided to just finish it off since there isn’t enough for another bigger project. So I decided to make a little cup cozie! I’ve done a moss stitch before but with only one color so I decided to give it a try with two colors and boy did it turn out better than I thought it would. This green/blue/brown ombre yarn is just a gorgeous pairing with the navy blue when it comes to this particular stitch so I’m really happy with the way this cup cozie came out. If I get a similar ombre yarn in the future, I am going to have to use this pattern with a bigger project next time.


Moss Stitch Cup Cozie

MATERIALS:

100% Acrylic
Main Color – Impeccable Yarn, Loops and Threads in Navy
Striped Color – Impeccable Yarn, Loops and Threads, in Tropical Storm (Blue Brown Ombre)
5.5 mm Crochet Hook

GAUGE:

9 sts per 2inches x 6 st per 2inches
When folded in half, it measures about 4.5 inches

NOTES:

1) This whole pattern is crocheted in Moss/Granite Stitch

Laying it Flat.

2) I alternate between two colors, carrying each color yarn across.
3) We are crocheting in the horizantal so this will determine how tall the cozie is going to be. You can choose how tall to make your cup cozie by adding more or less stitches. As long as the number of stitches are an even number. In terms of how long to crochet for, keep measuring on a cup you have to see how it’s fitting. This will determine how many rows you need to crochet. Mine fit nicely with 26 rows and it isn’t too tight. If you like it snug or looser on your cup, then up to you on how many rows you want.

PATTERN:

CHAIN 16
ROW 1 (COLOUR A)- SC in the 4th chain from the hook (this will mean that the first 2 chains are considered your first SC stitch and the 3rd is you skipping a chain). CH 1. repeat *SK 1 CH, SC in next CH, CH 1*. You should be ending with a SC on the last CH. Chain 2, turn.
ROW 2 – (COLOR B) *Skip 1 ST, SC in chain space, CH 1* repeat this sequence across. Every row from now on should end in a SC on last stitch.
ROW 3 – 26 – Repeat ROW 2, alternating colors.

(You will start to see that the colors line up really nicely like in the picture above.  If it’s not, then you are missing a step somewhere like skipping the wrong stitches.)

TO FINISH – Fasten off on last stitch with slip stitch and leave a tail to whip stitch across. Weave in any lingering ends.

Blues & Marbled Crochet Infinity Scarf

Blues & Marbled Crochet Infinity Scarf

So I finally finished my first scarf crochet project of the year.  It only took about 5 or 6 times to finally decide how I wanted to do it.  I tried to get all fancy at first but I was getting frustrated when my pattern wasn’t working the way I wanted it to.  So I finally just decided to keep it simple and this is what I came up with!


I’m pretty happy with it! It’s not absolutely perfect but I’m still quite happy considering the last time I made a scarf was about 8 years ago and it was nowhere near this kind of quality.  When I made my first scarf, it was messy, sloppy and uneven.  When I decided to get back into the crochet game, I did my research, watched a lot of videos and actually put effort into making it look a lot better so voila.

Check out my Ravelry account: WickedfulKnots for other patterns you would like to check out!

If you want to keep a copy of my pattern for easier viewing, you can also directly download the PDF pattern I made for this as well!  Otherwise, you can follow my pattern below!


Blues and Marbled Infinity Scarf

Materials:
100% Acrylic
Main Color – Impeccable Yarn, Loops and Threads in Navy
Striped Color – Impeccable Yarn, Loops and Threads, in Tropical Storm (Blue Brown Ombre)
5.5 mm Crochet Hook

Gauge:
Not really too important as scarves are objective. At the end of it all, the scarf measured 52 inches flat.  It fit snug when wrapped around twice.  To make it longer, just add more rows. To make it skinnier, decrease amount of stitches.

OTHER NOTES:

  • I chose to stripe it this way but of course, you are welcome to stripe it however you want. For the purpose of this particular stripe design, it’s a set of 12 rows. If you are following the design as is, you would increase/decrease the length of the scarf by a set of 12.
  • I used 100% acrylic yarn which I know isn’t the softest but you can soften it by googling ways on how to do it to get the softness and drape you want.
  • Each row is 28 DCs+2. Meaning, 28 DCs with a chain 2 (this ch2 is not considered a double crochet stitch throughout the whole pattern).
  • With the color change, I did the carry yarn method throughout each row. You are welcome to cut off after each row if you don’t mind weaving in all your ends after.

PATTERN:

CH 30
USE COLOR A
ROW 1: DC in 2nd hook from chain and DC throughout the rest of the row, CH 2 and turn. (28 sts – for every row from now on).
ROW 2: DC in first st and continue DC throughout (CH 2 doesn’t count as stitch). CH 2 and turn.
ROW 3-5: Repeat Row 2 (5 ROWS OF COLOR A)

FROM HERE ON OUT, JUST REPEAT ROW 2, just mind the COLOUR CHANGES.

USE COLOR B  ROW 4-9 (4 ROWS OF COLOR B)
BACK TO COLOR A  ROW 10-11 (2 ROWS OF COLOR A)
BACK TO COLOR B  ROW 12 (1 ROW OF COLOR B)

Repeat this COLOR sequence until you have reached the length you want (ROWS 1 – 12) For mine in the picture above, I did 6 sets of 12 (72 rows).  If you want it longer, do another increment of 12 rows, likewise if you want to decrease.  Each set should end in only 1 row of COLOR B.

FINISH: Finish off last stitch and fold scarf in half, matching ends together.  Continue to slip stitch each stitch across and cut off yarn.  Weave in all the necessary yarns stragglers and you are done!

 

Upcoming Projects

Upcoming Projects

Baby Booties and Hat

So, since my last post touched on my hobbies, I decided on act upon it and start a couple of crochet projects.  As I mentioned last, I was making some cute baby stuff for my dear friend. Oooh! They are so freaking adorable!  I forgot how cute tiny little clothing is since my son is almost two now and he obviously doesn’t wear tiny little infant clothing anymore.  His clothes are still fairly small but no where as small as these little things I crocheted!  I have yet to make the little scratch mittens though.  Those are a bit more challenging for me (you wouldn’t think so since they’re small and require less rows) because I have to use a smaller needle and the little holes can be difficult and harder for me to keep track of how stitches I’ve already done but still, it’s a good learning process for me as it’s been a while since I’ve made little mini things.  I just hope that her little girl fits into them when she’s born.  And yes … I know they are not really a “girl” color but I plan on girly-ing it up a little by adding cute little bows where I see fit.  Plus my friend said that she doesn’t want things that are too girly anyway.  She’s always been that kind of person.  Plus, there’s always the chance that the prediction of the sex of the baby can be wrong.  It’s not impossible.  There are many many cases where parents are told the sex of the baby and it ends up being a surprise on birth day that it’s the opposite LOL.

I am also starting another crochet project which is very relatively EASY.  It’s just a simple scarf that I’m making.  I’m still contemplating to make it a full infinity scarf or if I should keep it as a open-ended scarf and just add buttons to close it up so it’s snug around the neck for the added warmth.  I guess I’ll decide once I finish it.

I am just planning on starting off on simple items (like this scarf) and work my way up to harder projects.

My scarf project

And by harder, I mean just more intricate stitches and designs as I have always done very basic stuff.  I want to eventually create my own patterns and designs that are more than just a simple scarf.  It would be nice to look back and say, “Wow … I made that?!”.   Whatever I make will be just for friends and family really until I feel like they are good quality enough to sell in the future.  The nice thing with Etsy is that you can post whatever you like and you’re not pressured to make mass amounts.  I would just rather make sell things that I have already made, whether it be only one thing or two, and to test the waters to see if they even sell.

Another possible project I was thinking of, in terms of this whole selling thing, is to maybe touch upon my love of drawing and graphics.  I was actually browsing through Etsy and found that some people sell digital designs for like invitations and even coloring book pages that they drew up themselves!  Also the benefit of these is that you don’t have to ship anything!  It’s purely just a digital file that the buyer will download on their end.  To me that’s pretty cool.  Easy, not so much pressure and you get to share your work with people.  I am always doodling and doing lineart type of drawings so this is a big consideration for me in the Etsy world.

Sigh.  So many things to consider.  For now, I will just focus on one thing at a time.  That’s one of my internal goals this year actually.  To just focus on one thing at a time and not get overwhelmed by so many different things going on in my head.  I want this year to be organized since the last year was just pure chaos.  I want to actually make lists of things I want to accomplish and I want to abide by that list.  Those items may not be accomplished in this particular year but it would just be nice to acknowledge these dreams of mine.  I guess it’s like a bucket list except these goals are actually more realistically attainable, if you will.

I’m tired of saying, “I’ve always wanted to do this” and never pursuing it.  Sometimes, yes, it’s a leap of faith and you just go ahead and do it.  But there’s a fine line sometimes between being impulsive and rash and taking that next step to pursuing something.  I don’t want to rush into things and have it crash and burn.  I want to do things right and actually have some dignity in pursing something that means something to me.  I’ve always done things so rash and never got anywhere with it.  This time around, I will plan and consider the right time to do things and even if it takes a while, at least I know I am following through the way I want it to and get it right.

Hobbies or more?

Hobbies or more?

In light of my best friend having a baby girl in a few months time, I had all the more reason to start crocheting again.  I honestly can’t even remember the last time I crocheted anything but once I heard “baby”, it was like a candid click of a camera and instantly started looking for patterns to make cute little booties, mitten and a hat!

It was like riding a bike, with falls along the way.  I had to keep referring to YouTube videos because I kept second guessing myself on how to do simplest little things.  Eventually, maybe after re-making 4 right booties, I got it right (well … not right … more like felt satisfied HAH).  I’ve finished the hat and now it’s the pain of making the mittens.  They’re so tiny and adorable but wow a pain in my ass right now.  It’s all worth it though of course.  I love my best friend to pieces and this is for her little girl so it’s worth it!

I’ve always like creating things but my problem is that I never really followed through in mastering anything.

I’m like a “Jane of All Trades, Master of None”. 

I could be this crazy Crochet lady where I could make sweaters, baby sets, scarves, hats … and potentially be good enough to sell them on Etsy or something but I just don’t have the patience or the motivation.  I have always wanted my own business of some sort but never know what it could be due to my many hobbies and it’s hard for me to pick one. My sister-in-law actually made a good point (because she’s even better than I am at crocheting and arts and crafts), that when she makes something, it’s for love and for someone in particular.  She doesn’t find the idea of making masses amounts just to sell them a justification of her craft.  She wants to have meaning when she makes something and not to just do it because she wants to sell it.  See … I get that.  I don’t know if that’s a hidden subconscious reasoning behind why I don’t do it but it’s a great point that I never thought about before.

It’s not just crocheting though.  Even with my photography, my graphic skills (I used to make invitations and cards for friends and family like weddings and birthdays), my drawings, cooking and baking … I have so much potential in all these areas but I have just merely kept them as “hobbies” and never moved forward with them.

Time is a factor too I guess.  If you were to pursue something seriously, you would need to really dedicate your time.  Every minute of it.

I don’t have that.

Now thinking about it, I think that’s the major factor in my lack of ambition.  I think this is my epiphany. My time lies with my family, especially my son.  It’s hard for me to sacrifice time towards something else, probably because he’s still so young and I don’t want to miss any important things at this stage in his life where he’s learning how to talk and learning how to be aware and absorb his environment.  It’s one of those things where you have to put your ambitions aside until you know there’s time to spare to dedicate yourself to your craft.

So I think for now, I am obviously not going to stop my hobbies but nor am I pursuing any major ambitions.  I am going to take this time to hone in on my skills and hopefully somewhat perfect them. That way, by the time I can get some time to follow through with my ambitions, I can do it with confidence.