I’m Creative?!?

creative-blogger-award

The rules for this award are:

  • Nominate 15-20 blogs and notify all nominees via their social media/blogs
  • Thank and post the link of the blog that nominated you
  • Share 5 facts about yourself to your readers
  • Tell the nominees these rules

Thank you so, SO much to Teddy’s New Bear for nominating me for the Creative Blogger Award.  I am very flattered this Friday. 🙂

Five facts about me:

  1. I am knitting a shawl for myself.  It feels a little indulgent, since I am supposed to be building up my stock for my Etsy shop, but I really wanted to do it….so I did.  I’m using the Luna Moth Shawl pattern and my yarn is royal blue so it should be really pretty when it is complete!  For a while I got stuck in a green-hat rut, where I just kept making green hats….Different styles and different shades, but they are all green and they all go on a head.  I didn’t even realize it until I had three green hats sitting around my room looking bored because nobody wants to wear cozy green hats this time of year.  It’s not easy being green(and warm), you know….
  2. At 5:00 yesterday morning, I was attacked in my sleep by a beetle.  Just one pass wasn’t enough.  It happened several times before I woke up.  Then it got caught in my braided hair.  By this time, my sister had woken up, but had no idea what I was doing.  I just looked like a flailing maniac to her.  Mr. Beetle died later that morning, and it was not of natural causes.
  3. My pen-pal and I have been writing letters to each other for over 10 years!  Not the most regularly(I’m pretty bad at replying quickly), but it’s still 10 years+.  That’s a lot of snail mail.
  4. I love the mini-series “Pride and Prejudice” with Colin Firth and Jennifer Ehle.  My family has watched it together for years.  So many years in fact that when I was little and we watched it, I would only watch it for the part where Colin Firth would jump in the lake.  I was young enough that I had no appreciation for the amazing dialogue.  Sad but true. So the lake scene was my favorite.  Weird.            4.5 I can’t juggle. *Heaves a heavy sigh*
  5. Lastly, I would just like to point out that I don’t think I have ever been called creative.  Crafty yes, creative no.  Kind of sad if you think about it!  I have now though.  Even more flattered-ness to my Friday!  And I will leave you to wonder if I’m crafty in the “arts and crafts” sense, the “cunning and devious” sense, or both!

That was  lot of “I”s, but it was supposed to be 5 facts about me, I guess.  And now I have to nominate people.  Another fun fact about me: I’m too lazy to nominate that many people.  Here are the nominees-

Well, that’s five….  They are all great blogs and I highly recommend checking them out! Nominees- your rules are at the top of this blog post. 😉  Thank you again to my nominator,  she has a pretty cool blog that should be explored as well!

Have a terrific weekend, and be creative!  If possible, that is.  Speaking for myself, it can be kind of difficult…. but I’ll try!

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May and the Musical Appliances

Here are all the occurrences from May!  Nothing too, too exciting,  but hopefully nothing boring either.  😉  Quite a bit of this happened last week because my memory just doesn’t remember the previous weeks that well.  But I’ll get started, as I am sure you are dying with curiosity what I did with my month, and how it relates to what I mentioned in the title of this blog post!

  • We got musical appliances, giving a whole new meaning to the name SamSUNG.  We have owned a Samsung refrigerator and dishwasher for a while now, but just recently replaced our washer and dryer.  They are both quite the musical performers, for appliances anyway.
  • As our dance recital gets closer, the dance studio where some of my sisters and I take classes had a picture night.  We had to dress up in our costumes, do our hair, smile, be blinded by the camera….all the while being suffocated by sparkles, sequins, and hairspray.  I’ve danced a long time, and love it, but I still have no regard for sparkly stuff whatsoever.  I guess it’s just not meant to be!  By the way, our dance recital is next month, so more on that later!
  • I got to play volleyball for the first time this year- it was great.  And I got a lovely bruise on my wrist from hitting the ball too hard.  In the wrong direction.  Multiple times.  Needless to say, I was not the MVP.
  • We celebrated Memorial Day by going to the oldest Memorial Day parade in the country.  It started in 1868.
  • I had a friend over for the holiday.  Friends are just the best. 🙂
  • Our truck decided to break down on Memorial Day, but everyone made it home safely and our poor, old truck is getting repaired….
  • I tried a Frozen Hot Chocolate smoothie from QT.  I should have tried it sooner!
  • We had young friends stay over with us for almost a week- that was fun, and it’s always interesting adjusting to having different people in the house
  • We are preparing for one of my sisters’ graduation party.  In trying to make our house presentable to our general acquaintances, it’s turned into a slight renovation of the house.  I’m only exaggerating a little.
  • Our meat chickens made a change of residency- they went from the garden to our freezer, with a little work in between.  But I’ll spare you the details, just know that I was stuck plucking, and dread the day I shall have to again.
  • Our strawberry patch started producing earlier this month, and has yet to stop.  Our table that had been covered in small plants and dirt is now covered in beautiful, sun-ripened, delicious strawberries.  I had forgotten how good they taste!  My family had a strawberry patch several years ago in our garden, but were replaced with vegetables.  Last year we turned one of our hills into a terrace-type thing called a swale, and planted a ton of strawberry plants.  We are now reaping the benefits, plus some.  I do believe that today we begin the making of strawberry preserves….
  • In addition to the graduation party we are having, I have already been to one this month with more to come.  It’s typically fun to go to those and see the baby pictures, socialize, and eat cake.
  • We got more chicks.  This time they are egg-layers, and much cuter.
  • On my way to a dog-sitting job, with two nine-year-old backseat drivers, I saw baby foxes!  They were just hanging out by the road, but thankfully not on the road.  Did you know that a baby fox can be called a kit, cub, or pup?  At least that’s the story that Google is telling, and they’re sticking with it!
  • Our garden has been slowly coming together.  There will be some planting, and then it will rain, then more planting, then more rain.
  • My sister and I began a thing called oil-pulling.  We swish coconut oil around in our mouths for 20 minutes every morning.  It’s not the most pleasant thing in the world- who would like a tablespoon full of coconut-flavored oil in their mouth?  It’s like shortening with coconut flakes in it.  But that’s only for the first half a minute or so.  After that it melts.  Our respective motives for doing this odd thing actually vary.  The oil-pulling is supposed to pull bacteria out of your mouth.  In doing so, it can have the added benefit of whitening teeth, and better health for teeth(like cavities and such).  My sister is interested in the teeth whitening, I am very interested in reversing a partial cavity I have because going to the dentist is not, by any stretch, something I enjoy.  We’ll see if we each get our wishes…. Another added benefit is that our teeth feel clean and glossy all day.
  • Lastly, I have been knitting.  I have been working on an eternity scarf/cowl.  It has checkers of a caramel color and a chocolate color.  I like it quite a bit, but being that I don’t wear a whole lot of scarves, it’s going on  my Etsy shop.  So look for it on there soon, if you want to see it anyway….  🙂  Or I might put a picture of it on Instagram- @Hannah__Abell I’d love to know what you think!

I’m thinking that’s about it!  Like I said, nothing too exciting.  But then again, you can’t say I was sitting around twiddling my thumbs either.  I hope you had a wonderful month of May!  I’d love to hear what you did.  🙂  Thanks for reading, and have a lovely weekend.

From Belgium, With Love (Part 2)

Custom Order Mohawk Hat

Brown and Beige to Belgium!

Well, it’s finished…. And actually, it’s already in Belgium!  Or so I’ve been told…. I had a few glitches along the way, but my first international order is coming to a close.

Last Wednesday(not a day ago Wednesday, but a week ago Wednesday), I put the finishing touches on my custom order.  I got home from work, and prepared myself to felt the Mohawk.  Just to let you know, a Mohawk hat must be felted, or it looks like a rug on top of a hat.  To get the spiky Mohawk, you have to soak it in soapy hot water and aggravate the wool in it.  Yes, I was aggravating my wool.  Anyway, I nearly had a heart attack when my wool wouldn’t felt.  Like, I repeated the process several times and it was *still* a floppy mess- there were no spikes involved.  Well, other than the imaginary spikes in my head, getting closer and closer to popping my balloon of success and happiness about my first international custom order.  And that above is why I rarely ever make creative comparisons- because my creativity is wacko and my comparisons stink…. So, back to my story…. The wool was NOT getting aggravated-  I was getting aggravated.  So, after probably the 10th time(very little exaggeration involved here….) of little success, I got more aggressive.  Instead of rubbing it in between my hands, which has always worked before, I started rubbing it fiercely against a flat, but textured surface.  My hopes of it working were low, but I was also getting pretty desperate at this point- I HAD to ship it out by the following Tuesday, I was almost out of yarn, and there was absolutely no way I could make another one.  Imagine my massive surprise(and even more relief!) when it actually worked!

IMG_2367

The day after that, Thursday, I took my little project to the post office.  I was quite happy that it seemed to be sent without a hitch.  Friday I checked the tracking number- USPS says that number doesn’t exist.  I thought that was okay- it was only the day after, and with all the Valentine’s Day mail….. Yes, I was grasping for excuses.  And they only got worse from there over the weekend, when my package and it’s tracking number *still* didn’t exist!  Monday I tried to call the post office, but then I realized it was President’s Day.  Sigh…..So, Tuesday, almost a week later, I finally talked to the nice post office lady.  Apparently, their computer system crashed or something like that, and she couldn’t check it at the time.  She called me back yesterday, but I was at work.  I returned her call today(tag- she’s it!) and got good news- my package is already in Belgium!  I’m not too excited that I can’t see it myself on the computer, but I was told that the problem is a result of that computer crash last Thursday.  So, now I have to play the waiting game and see how it goes about getting to my customer in Belgium.  We’ll see!

Thanks for reading!  If you didn’t get to see the original post, click here.  If you would like to see the original custom order from my Etsy shop, click here.

Have a lovely day!!!

From Belgium, With Love

This week, I finally went international!  Would you like to take a guess at how I accomplished this feat???

I have never actually traveled internationally, so that is not it. Come to think of it, I’ve never even ridden in an airplane…. *Mark that on the to-do list*

No one from Belgium is coming to visit me….and that wouldn’t make me the country-hopper anyway.

If you have any more creative guesses feel free to comment them below, but I’m going to tell you anyway- something I have knitted is going to Belgium!  Last Monday I received a custom order through Etsy for a Mohawk hat in brown and beige.  The order wasn’t exactly ‘with love’ because I don’t know this person, but I couldn’t resist the title….And the hat shall be sent with love!  After it’s knitted and felted with love.  🙂  So, that is my excitement for this week.

If you would like to see the original, look here.   You’ll have to use your imagination for the brown and beige part though, because I don’t have any pictures yet.  Perhaps I shall when my work is done!  The body of the hat is going to be dark brown, and the exciting Mohawk part will be beige.  My dear customer didn’t request a letter, like the original has, but it’s his order so I’m happy to accommodate!

And now, I have a simple tongue-twister for you- “Brown and beige to Belgium”…..Say that five times fast. 🙂

Thank you very much for reading and have a wonderful week!  I’m off to go a-knitting….

The Benefits of Knitting….

And how it can lead to World Peace. I bet you’ve never heard that one before! 🙂

You might have been wondering (or not) when I am actually going to write about knitting or knotting, because I haven’t since the beginning of my blog.  Well, here goes.  I’m going to explain how knitting could bring about World Peace (theoretically).  This is merely a humorous speculation (hopefully). To accomplish World Peace, we would need a lot less sin in the world, not just more yarn, and regrettably knitting rarely has that effect on people.  I should also inform you that this revelation ‘came to me’ when I was rather young, which may help you understand why it’s so impractical.

My brilliant plan for World Peace was to teach everyone to knit.  This way, those people with evil intentions would be too busy to carry out any of their plans….  Those people without any intentions at all would be given something to do…. Those with too many intentions would be able to relax with a simple knitting project and take their stress out on that….  And those who are formulating intentions could do something productive while contemplating!  Just imagine how warm the world would be!!! 🙂  That’s another benefit-  we could clothe so many needy people!  I’m just waiting to be contacted for my Nobel Peace award…. Just kidding!

Now, obviously there are flaws with this.  I am sensible of that.  For example, I know many people who have tried knitting already, and it just isn’t for them.  Maybe we could have World Peace through knitting and crocheting…. Another flaw would be all those poor little naked sheep, alpacas, bunnies, etc., that gave their way of staying warm to others….however, they can just grow some more.

Here are some practical benefits of knitting, if you made it through the silly speculations above. 🙂

  • It really does give you something to do, if your hands need an occupation while sitting at a doctor’s office, watching TV, etc.
  • It really is stress-relieving, depending on who you talk to, and what pattern they are working on….If it’s an easy pattern, yes, but if it’s involved, no, and don’t bother trying to ask them because you’ll cause them to lose count of their stitches or rows.  Not that I’m speaking from experience or anything…. 😉
  • It really is productive- you get a lovely handmade item when done, as opposed to having nothing to show for other things….like watching TV (which is why you should knit at the same time!)
  • It really is a great way to make some gifts!  That is, assuming those receiving the gifts actually need the item, and its quality renders it useful….I know some of the first gifts I made were *not* useful, that’s for sure.  In cases such as that, I like to think it’s the thought that counts…. 🙂

So, there you go.  Hopefully, if you were considering trying to knit, I have made you eager to start, and not scared you off!  The world could always use more knitters….even if it doesn’t lead to World Peace.

If you’d like to see an example (or two) of knitting, I’d love you to visit my shop on Etsy- To Knit or Knot.  Have a lovely day, hopefully with a little knitting, but I don’t wish any knots your way!

Do you have any ideas for World Peace, be they impractical or just plain silly?  Let me know in the comments below!

The Beginning of ‘To Knit or Knot’….

My love of crafting started a long, long time ago…in this galaxy. 😉 As a young girl, I tried several forms of needlework, and handwork in general. This included a little bit of embroidery, quite a few things made from a lap-loom(they make great gifts! Or at least, I thought so….), making a quilt with my sisters and my mom for our babysitter when she was getting married, attempting to learn crocheting, and so on. All of these kept my hands busy, but I never really went very far with them….

When I was eight years old, I got a basket for Christmas. And it was not an empty basket! It had probably between eight and ten skeins of yarn in it, a beginners knitting book(specifically for children), and a pair of knitting needles.

Over the next year, I learned(with the guidance of my dear mother) how to finger-knit, roll skeins of yarn into balls of yarn, and knit the garter stitch. Thankfully, the phrase “Practice makes perfect” is true in my case(or at least, mostly true- my knitting still isn’t quite ‘perfect’!)- my first doll blanket is a little bit of an eyesore. But, at the time, you can imagine how proud of it I was. This blanket was something I had made, and it could be used by my dolls!

I love to knit!

I love to knit!

By the next Christmas, I was knitting presents for all my family and friends. I will tell you now, they still were not quality pieces of work…. It’s the thought that counts, right?  The next thing I was taught by my mother was how to purl. I actually had to learn this several times, being completely honest(thankfully, my mom is a patient teacher).

At this point, I was on my own. I had reached the limit of my mother’s knowledge of knitting(she’s more of a quilter). So learning new techniques was a little bit more of a challenge, and involved books, or the Internet. But I continued to learn more, and love it!

Cables and lace came next- both kept me fascinated! I struggled the most to learn how to cable, the instructions I read just didn’t make sense. And I really had an urge to learn cables!!! Finally, I found the explanation that just ‘made sense’, I guess it had to be put a particular way….

A knitting project in process- a hat for my sister....

A knitting project in process- a hat for my sister….

Tatting has become another craft that I have more than a passing interest in, although it’s still not like knitting…. My experience with tatting has been a little more ‘knotty’ and I have only been doing it for a couple of years. Hopefully, I will become a proficient before long.

My goal is to be like the woman described in Proverbs 31, and among her other characteristics, “She selects wool and flax and works with eager hands…” ~Proverbs 31:13. I have been knitting for over 10 years now, and it still is my favorite thing to do. So much so that I decided to open a shop on Etsy-  https://www.etsy.com/shop/ToKnitorKnot1013

And that’s all folks! You now know how I began knitting, and why I haven’t stopped. Thanks for reading, and have a great day!