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I am preparing for Yarn School and all I can think about in my spare time is spinning. HOWEVER, I’ve imposed a rule that I need to finish up some other projects first before I go all willy nilly into making yarn. I’m waiting for my spinning wheel to come so I have a little more time before I’m super tempted.

I’ve been working on an afghan for Carl’s dad’s first cousin a friend that needed one finished. It was started by her mother over 40 years ago and she wants me to finish it. It’s slow going because it is crocheted granny squares and it is HUGE! The length of it is 13 squares. Six rows are done, 2 more need to be joined, and I’d like to have about 11 rows. I think that will make it the perfect size for a bed afghan. I don’t think I’ll finish before yarn school but at least this is keeping me from leaving this project to languish again like I have for this past year.

I finished a pair of socks. I still need to weave in the ends but the the weather is starting to be perfect for wearing socks so I’ll be motivated to do that pretty soon.

This is how I’ve been keeping myself busy during the school days. That, along with cooking, laundry, doctor appointments, playing with the dog, dog appointments, and the million other things that keep a person busy during the day. I’m just grateful that I can do all of this now with no children needing my attention. I really do get so much more accomplished! Imagine that!


Yarn School

Posted by christy in Craft | Life - (2 Comments)

Carl’s been asking me where I want to go on a solo vacation. I finally decided. I’m going to Harveyville, Kansas. It’s the premiere destination for a getaway. Haven’t you heard? That’s where they have Yarn School. I’ll be there Oct 3-7 learning how to spin and dye. It sounds like an amazing time and I’m anxious to learn a new hobby.

In related news: I bought a spinning wheel today.

If you could go anywhere for a few days by yourself, where would you choose? I hear there are a few more open spots at Yarn School.

Mixed CD of Love and a Robot

Posted by christy in Life - (Comments Off)

Mixed cd of love and a robot

This was my present to Carl for our 15 year anniversary last month. It’s a mixed CD of LOVE and a crocheted robot for his lab. The CD is epic and the kids ask to listen to it all the time. Playlist to follow. We started dating NINETEEN years ago! Carl wasn’t even NINETEEN years old back then.

Here are 15 things about Carl:

1. He is 37 years old (even though he looks 25)
2. He loves babies.
3. He doesn’t love dogs but he loves Dakota (thank goodness).
4. He eats corned beef out of a can whenever I let him (usually not very often because it reminds me of dog food).
5. He always does the dishes.
6. He loves his job but if he had to pick a dream job I think it would be a master carpenter like Norm Abram or an orchestra conductor.
7. He tolerates my crazy.
8. Back in our early years he would tell super long stories and if he got interrupted, he always remembered his place and when there was a lull in the conversation he’d bring it back to his story by saying, “Anyway, what happened was…”
9. He can eat anything he wants and in the past 15 years his weight hasn’t varied more than a few pounds in either direction.
10. He is morally opposed to buying flowers but he does it anyway sometimes because he knows I like it.
11. He can play almost any instrument.
12. We became friends by playing ping pong at the Institute. I don’t know if I’ve ever beaten him but I used to be able to hold my own.
13. He’s traveled all over the world but his favorite place to visit is France.
14. He loves a good deal and gets great satisfaction getting things for free. In fact, the day we got engaged we picked up a bookshelf off the side of the road–and we still have it!
15. He used to wear t-shirts (most of them freebies) and jeans every day and he still has a huge collection of t-shirts from the 90’s. He finally let me start to cut up most of them so I could make him a t-shirt quilt.

I sure love that guy.


I Want it That Way Backstreet Boys
Arms Christina Perri
Only Wanna Be With You Hootie and the Blowfish
I Won’t Give Up Jason Mraz
My Life Would Suck Without U Kelly Clarkson
Mirrors Justin Timberlake
Lucky Jason Mraz
Kiss You One Direction
Miles Christina Perri
Love You Like a Love Song Selena Gomez
Count on Me Bruno Mars
Teenage Dream Katy Perry
Come on Over Christina Aguilera

All of the 5th graders in town are treated to a fun field trip to a Saltdogs game. They are our local minor league baseball team. The school expressed concerns about taking Caleb and said they just weren’t going to have him go. This made me super sad and I said I would do whatever it takes to make sure he gets to go. They did some legwork and we made some modifications to Caleb’s day but he was able to attend!

I picked him up from school so he didn’t have to ride the noisy, hot bus. That way, if things went poorly, I’d have transportation to get him out of there. We arrived at the stadium not long after his classmates. They ate lunch at their seats and they each received $3 to spend at the concession stand. Caleb picked a snow cone. I got one, too! It was SO HOT!

Salt dogs field trip

Needless to say, Caleb had a great time and he was one of the most well-behaved 5th graders there! We had no issues at all and everyone had fun. Even Carl was able to come down to the stadium to be with us. I love that Caleb is showing the teachers that he can be responsible and well-behaved!

A few weeks before school started I took the kids down to Oklahoma. Carl was still out of town doing his NASA trip so I was driving solo with the kids and the dog. Dakota was my best riding companion. She didn’t whine or complain at all.

Oklahoma trip summer 2013

In fact, Dakota probably had the best vacation. She met a new friend, Cookie. Cookie is my mom’s new australian shepherd puppy.

Oklahoma trip summer 2013

She also enjoyed chasing the ducks and going into the pond. We found out she is an excellent swimmer and can run SUPER FAST!

Oklahoma trip summer 2013

The kids had fun, too! Eva was out on the 4 wheeler with her aunt Lisa within minutes of arriving. By the end of the trip, Eva was driving that thing by herself (with Lisa riding with her behind).

Oklahoma trip summer 2013

Caleb and I had a mom/son date to Incredible Pizza one day while the girls and cousin Kenny were down in Norman. Caleb is obsessed with the Deal or No Deal game and he is really good at it. We were there on a day where you could double your game money so for $30 we ate and played all we wanted and still had $20 left on our game card when we were done (which we gave to cousin Kenny to use later).

Oklahoma trip summer 2013

I had a lot of fun too. It was nice visiting with my family and just chilling out as much as possible. That was really my goal. Low stress. For the most part, it was. I enjoyed a few trips to Sonic while I was there and like that this one had tv screens at their ordering station.

Oklahoma trip summer 2013

It’s the little things, people.

On more than one occasion, Carl and I have been watching tv or just lying in bed and he would say, “Is that thunder?”. Nope. It’s my belly. My tummy grumbles have been getting a lot worse and when I went to the dr. last week she suggested I go gluten and dairy-free for the next six weeks and then we will re-assess and see if it needs to be permanent or if I can put some stuff back into my diet (so long, bread and cheese!). I also gave up soda…again.

Healthy life

This is my replacement. It’s water with cucumber, lime, and lemon. It’s pretty tasty but it doesn’t have the fizzy kick that I enjoy with my diet dr. pepper. I’m thinking of doing this with sparkling water and seeing how it tastes.

Since I’m forcing myself to eat healthier, I thought I better get back to my workout routine that I’ve been avoiding for about 8 months. I’m back to kickboxing.
Healthy life

This morning it felt like I was the punching bag. I totally barfed (I made it to the bathroom) and when I came home I felt like I was going to vomit again so I just rested on the bed and luckily Carl was still home so I had him peel me an orange so I could get something in my stomach. I think the problem was I vomited at the beginning of class and then continued on and my body was like, WOAH THERE PARTNER! It’s been hours since the class and I’m back to my normal self now so I’ll be back for the punishment later this week.

So if you see me around town and I look super cranky, you now know why.

Princess Daisy

Posted by christy in Craft | I Made it Myself | Projects | Sewing - (Comments Off)

A couple of weeks ago Caleb wanted to dress up like Princess Daisy from Mario Kart Wii. Usually he makes do with whatever clothing we have lying around and cobbles together something. We just happen to have a major shortage of yellow clothes around here. What can I say? My grandma Charlton once told me that we don’t look good in yellow so I never wear it.

I decided that I would just make him a dress. I’ve got skills. I stayed up late that night and started the bodice. Before I closed it and attached the skirt, I thought I better wait to have him try it on.

Princess daisy

I’m so glad I did! It fit him perfectly up top but I didn’t take into account his belly. It wouldn’t close at the bottom. After some quick problem solving, I decided I would leave the bodice alone and use safety pins to close it in the back and then just make a separate skirt with an elastic waist.

Problem solved.

Caleb and his staff made the crown and the daisy jewel.

Princess daisy

Not to be outdone, I’m now knee deep in red/white polka dots making a Minnie Mouse dress for Eva. She assures me that it will be her Halloween costume this year.

Specs: I used cheap broadcloth material and the Butterick pattern for the women’s size costume of Cinderella.

Happiness Project

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Happiness vision board

Last Tuesday night a group of women from church got together to talk about how to be happy and we discussed Gretchen Rubin’s book, The Happiness Project: Or, Why I Spent a Year Trying to Sing in the Morning, Clean My Closets, Fight Right, Read Aristotle, and Generally Have More Fun.  Part of the activity was making a vision board. This one is mine.

I love every single thing about it.

I didn’t make it with a clear purpose. I just cut out things I loved and that “spoke to me” and then I slapped them on the page. There you have it.

Happy, happy, happy.


They Love Me. They Really Love Me.

Posted by christy in Life - (Comments Off)

I spent the morning cleaning up some messes downstairs and I was getting frustrated and wanted to throw all of my kids’ stuff away since they don’t like to clean it up.

Then I saw this:

My kid loves me

I love you too, kiddos!

Baking Bread

Posted by christy in Food - (Comments Off)

Once we were home from France, we became acutely aware that our local baguettes just weren’t going to cut it. I checked out a book from our local library called, Artisan Breads at Home (at Home with The Culinary Institute of America), and decided to try my hand at making our own. This book had several good recipes and after a trip to Whole Foods to get malt syrup, we got started making the Poolish. That is the process of starting the yeast to ferment the night before baking.

Baking the bread took some effort. It was a full half-day experience. It wasn’t all hands-on during that time, but I had to stay pretty close to home because there were a lot of time sensitive steps to go through.

Homemade Baguettes

The result was worth it. This is my first batch from the book. This book uses a few different calculations and I’ve found in subsequent batches that the most accurate is using the weight. Some of the volume measurements are off. Luckily, I have a good food scale that allowed me to do that.

When it came down to the fact that I wanted my own book on artisan bread banking, I looked at a bunch at the library and bookstore and settled on buying Peter Reinhart’s Artisan Breads Every Day, as it seemed a little more user friendly and had more recipes I was interested in. I’ll definitely keep you all posted on my favorites from that book.