reading recap

Last year for my reading challenge on goodreads, I set my goal at 25 books. I passed that goal by finishing 34 books!

  1. The Girl Before by Rena Olson
  2. The Couple Next Door by Shari Lepena
  3. Lost Souls by Kelley Armstrong
  4. The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood
  5. The Bear by Claire Cameron
  6. Commonwealth by Ann Patchett
  7. Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi
  8. The Road by Cormac McCarthy
  9. Lucky Boy by Shanthi Sekaran
  10. Swimming Lessons by Claire Fuller
  11. The Widow of Wallstreet by Randy Susan Meyers
  12. A Fall of Marigolds by Susan Meissner
  13. This Is How It Always Is by Laurie Frankel
  14. Do Not Become Alarmed by Maile Meloy
  15. The Curious Charms of Arthur Pepper by Phaedra Patrick
  16. Almost Missed You by Jessica Strawser
  17. Moloka’i by Alan Brennert
  18. Shanghai Girls by Lisa See
  19. The Wonder by Emma Donoghue
  20. Almost Sisters by Joshilyn Jackson
  21. Our Short History by Lauren Grodstein
  22. Waking Lions by Ayelet Gundar-Goshen
  23. Dreams of Joy by Lisa See
  24. Rituals by Kelley Armstrong
  25. Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine by Gail Honeyman
  26. A Beautiful, Terrible Thing by Jen Waite
  27. Nobody is Ever Missing by Catherine Lacey
  28. A Stranger in the House by Shari Lapena
  29. The Life She Was Given by Ellen Marie Wiseman
  30. Last Christmas in Paris by Hazel Gaynor and Heather Webb
  31. The Story of Beautiful Girl by Rachel SimonΒ 
  32. Sometimes I Lie by Alice Feeney
  33. Close Enough to Touch by Colleen Oakley
  34. The Good Widow by Liz Fenton and Lisa Steinke

A couple of the books I actually don’t remember much about, which shows me that I really should be better about writting out reviews! The books in bold are the ones I do remember most about and know that I definitely liked them.

For this year, I’ve set my challenge up for 30 books. I’m not off to the best start, I started a couple different books that I just couldn’t get into, it’s such a frustrating feeling! But, I am now reading When We Were Worthy by Marybeth Mayhew Whalen and am liking it so far.

What are you reading right now? I’d love suggestions to add to my list!

 

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hello 2018

Happy New Year! You can still say that nine days in, right? We all actually made it to midnight this year, something that I don’t think has happened in a very long time, probably not since I had new babies that were up to eat around then! Next year I think I’ll actually plan some fun things for the kids now that they seem to show interest in it.

I haven’t done any planning for this year, usually I plan out what projects I’d like to attempt to do but I just haven’t sat down to figure it out. I’ll get to it. The year has started out kind of weird for me, so maybe after some things have passed and I get more information so I can focus on the more fun things for the year.

no more knitting endless k2 p2 ! πŸ˜₯πŸ˜₯ first finish of 2018, hopefully it will keep my husband warm working outside . . . #knittersofinstagram #craftastherapy #makersgonnamake #makeitwithmichaels

But, I have finished my first project of the year. I knit my husband a balaclava, something that he has been asking me to knit for him for entirely too long. For some reason, I thought it was going to be a lot more difficult than it ended up being. I used a free pattern (found here) and some yarn that my husband picked out, Loops & Threads Barcelona in the Onyx colorway. I like how the yarn knits up but I think it’s going to fuzz like crazy pretty easily, I can always knit him another. Hopefully, it keeps him warm for the rest of winter while he’s working outside.

 

β™₯ Casey

I got a good amount of Christmas crafting finished this year! I honestly didn’t think I would do any this year but something just came over me in November and it’s all I wanted to do.

another Christmas project finished! I didn't think I'd actually finish him this year but I hunkered down during my oldest's sleepover party to finish this weekend. I'm not super happy with the finish, my embroidery sucks and I seriously overstuffed BUT I

I found this pattern last year, I wanted to make it then but didn’t, I’m really happy that I managed to do it now though. He turned out pretty darn cute! My embroidery sucks and I way over stuffed him but he’s sweet and I can get over those things. He’s already flattened out a good amount, so I think when he comes out again next year, I’ll like him more! The pattern for the Santa Countdown Pillow isΒ here on ravelry.


πŸŽ…finished this one last week! I loved stitching this project so much, @stitchrovia patterns are always so much fun to do πŸ’• #crossstitchersofinstagram #craftastherapy #stitchrovia #santaclausiscomingtotown

I also did some Christmasy cross stitching. This pattern is by Stitchrovia, I really enjoy her patterns! I stitched this one up pretty quickly, it wasnt easy to put aside. I framed it but I need to do a better job soon, I rushed it a little so I could get it hung up for the season.

πŸŽ„one more Christmas project done! next pair going on the needles ASAP but first a little rest for my arm, finishing all these projects caused some pain flare up πŸ˜₯ #knittersofinstagram #sockknittersofinstagram #socktawk

πŸŽ„finished the second pair! I won't have a pair for myself this year but that's ok with me, making them for other people makes me more happy! πŸ˜„πŸ˜„ . . #knittersofinstagram #sockknittersofinstagram #socktawk #craftastherapy #christm

I also knit up two pairs of socks from the fun Candy Cane sock yarn that I bought from West Yorkshire Spinners. The first pair is my husbands, a plain vanilla and the second pair I knit for my sister. I added a small bit of texture with some purling to the last pair, vanilla knitting feels boring to me sometimes, even with the fun striping. I didn’t get around to making myself a pair from the yarn and I’m not actually sure that I will be, I think that I want to knit something different with the remaining yarn.

2017 Christmas ornaments!

And finally, I crocheted some new ornaments for my kids! I used this free mini tree pattern from Spin a Yarn Crochet. I really like her style of pattens, I’d like to try out some more of them next year I think. I didn’t add much to the trees, just a yellow star to the top, I didn’t think it needed much else. As usual, I made four ornaments, one for each of my kids and my nephew. I hope that I can keep up the tradition of the ornaments being handmade each year for a long time, it’s one of my favorite things to do!

That’s it for my my Christmas crafting this year! I’m so ready to work on some different projects now.

 

feels

the other sock is to be frogged 🐸 my gauge was way too tight. I'm knitting with bigger needles now, they're a better fit but I'm not sure how I feel about the looser gauge yet πŸ˜• I'll keep knitting though. . . #knittersofinstagram #sockknitte

Good afternoon! Today is a nice cold day, nice because I’m sitting cozy inside knitting… nothing to complain about here. I have my husband’s Christmas socks on the needles, I’m using my new needles from Knit Picks. I’m loving the needles, they’re the nickel plated DPNs. I’m not 100% sure how I feel about the gauge I’m getting but they fit a lot better, so I’m going to continue on with them.

This past week was a little weird for me. I found out about someone I knew years ago passing away last weekend. I had actually looked him up on facebook to message just two weeks ago but I chickened out and didn’t do it. I think that’s why the news has made me feel like it has. I’m just feeling weird.. I wish I could have been brave enough to have taken those few minutes to just say something and clear the air. We had the most ridiculous, public fight when I was pregnant with my first. When I look back on it, it was so stupidly funny. Ugh. But, we hadn’t talked since that stupidity. Regrets suck. I guess that’s what the main feeling is…

Anyway.

talk again soon!

β™₯ Casey

getting Christmas ready…

hello! it’s very much winter time here now, it’s snowing as I’m typing. It snowed not long after Halloween and actually stuck around. We’ve had quite a few cold days but I’m enjoying the coziness! All the winter weather had me in the mood to start on some Christmas crafts and it’s taken everything over completely. It’s all I want to do for the rest of the year.

πŸŽ…πŸ’•πŸ’• so flipping cute!! gave myself a blister sewing other parts of this, so now I have to set him aside for awhile ☹☹ . . . . . #crochetersofinstagram #crochetgirlgang #craftastherapy #christmascrochet #santaclaus

I’m making a Santa advent pillow. I found this pattern a year or two ago but just never found the time to sit down and make it. It was the first thing that started up my Christmas crafting. He’s close to being done but my embroidery is awful, so I’ve been putting off embroidering numbers on, I’m trying to find some other way to add numbers but just haven’t found anything yet. Find the pattern here, Santa Countdown Pillow.

stitchy progress πŸŽ… . #crossstitchersofinstagram #craftastherapy #stitchrovia #santaclausiscomingtotown

The other Santa themed project I’ve been working on is a new cross stitch picture. The pattern is from Stitchrovia, one of my favorites. It’s been a pretty quick stitch so far. She has a couple more Christmas themed patterns I would love to stitch up some day! Find the pattern for this one here, Santa Claus is Coming to Town.

happy mail! happy mail! πŸŽ„ I may be doing some Christmas sock knitting soon πŸ˜„ waiting on new DPNs to come in first though... . . . #knittersofinstagram #knitallthesocks #socktawk #sockknittersofinstagram #christmasknitting

And my last project (so far) is some Christmas socks. I bought three skeins of this Candy Cane yarn from West Yorkshire Spinners with plans to knit myself, my husband and my sister each a pair of socks. I started a pair of socks already but knit them way too tightly, so I had to put them aside to wait for new needles.

In the last year, I have noticed that my gauge has changed quite a bit when I knit, when I started I used 2.25mm but am finding that I get better fit and gauge at a 2.5mm now, so I had to order new needles. Also, I’m trying to use DPNs now because I’m finding that my hand don’t end up in as much pain as when I use my circulars. I have my new needles now and just started a new pair, so hopefully I will be able to get the three pairs finished before Christmas!

That’s all I have started so far, I still have ornaments to get making. I need to get the pattern figured out so I’m not making them last minute. I am thinking about one of these cute Christmas cupcakes but I’m not sure which yet!

Anyway, thanks for stopping in today!

β™₯ Casey

recent projects

hello! It’s definitely fall here now and I am enjoying it as much as I can. We don’t usually get much of a long fall where I live but it seems to be sticking this year, it’s amazing!

I’m still enjoying work, I’ve lost 10lbs since I started, so I’m pretty happy about that! Kids are doing good, I took my son in for allergy testing last week because he reacted to some food and his toothpaste this summer. He’s allergic to most animals and outdoors but no food! The doctor was awful but we got some answers, that was the good part at least.

Anyway, on to what I’ve been making! I crocheted a couple toys for a project called Toys for Syrian Refugee Children. I crocheted the lion and a bear, I wanted to crochet more but I lost a bit of mojo again. I’m happy to be sending something off though!

done with a lion for @chubbyknots_crochet #toysforsyrianrefugeechildren #crochetgirlgang #crochetersofinstagram #craftastherapy #crochetaddict #toymakers #amigurumi #amigurumilove #makersgonnamake

another toy for @chubbyknots_crochet 🐻 this time a bear #toysforsyrianrefugeechildren #crochetersofinstagram #crochetgirlgang #craftastherapy #crochetaddict #amigurumilove #toymakers #amigurumi #makersgonnamake

I’m also knitting again! I decided that I wanted to make myself some fingerless mittens from the yarn I purchased from MidKnit Cravings. I’m using DPNs and I haven’t been feeling too much pain using them, so I think I may need to invest in more of them so I can get back to knitting socks.

I have a finished glove! πŸ˜„ I used the Blueberry Waffles stitch pattern for it but other than that, I just winged it. I'm really happy that it worked out how I wanted it to and that I didn't have to frog at all once I got the stitch count figured out

I finished one mitt this weekend, I’m really happy with how it turned out, I can’t wait to have the pair finished! I’m using the Blueberry Waffles stitch pattern but no pattern for the actual mitt. Getting the stitch count right was the only small issue I had but I got it and had no problems afterwards. The yarn is fun to knit with, it screams fall to me!

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Thanks for stopping by today! I hope you’re getting some great fall weather where you are.

β™₯ Casey

what’s happening

Looks like it’s been a month since I last posted. Summer is over and the kids have been back in school for a few weeks now. This school year seems like it’s going to be a lot more busy than previous years, lots of clubs have been joined already. My oldest is in her final year of elementary school and they already let us know lots would be happening, today she went off for her first camping trip of the school year, there will be one more closer to summer too. My other daughter has started band which is not what we had planned on for her, we really didn’t want this extra distraction for her when she struggles so hard already. But, apparently every other kid in her grade joined this year, so the teachers had nothing prepared for her to do and so it’s been forced on us. Finding an instrument for her was quite the ordeal, I finally have one coming in from out of province for her to use.

I’ve also started back to work this month! After 12 years of not working! It was something I thought about trying to do for quite awhile but I really didn’t make any serious plans for it because my anxiety would always make me freak out, so I’d stop thinking about it. Anyway, I decided to try out housekeeping again, I figured that since it was familiar already it wouldn’t be so scary. The first place I called hired me right away and I’ve been doing part time work for a few weeks now. I want to try some schooling soon though because I do not want to do this type of work forever! I actually enjoy it somewhat, it keeps me active which I loveΒ but it’s gross at times…

Since I last posted, my mind has been in such a better place. I think that going to work has really helped me. Meeting new people and talking to guests hasn’t been as scary as I worried it might be, I’m actually finding myself getting more comfortable around people again. I feel a little like I should have gone back to work years ago, I probably could have avoided some of the painful anxiety I’ve had over the years.

When I was feeling really not great, I decided to start crocheting something. I had no real plans and just crocheted, I ended up making a teddy bear. He turned out pretty darn cute. I used some Paton’s Kroy yarn that I had in my stash for quite awhile. I found crocheting him to be so relaxing and it helped keep my mind clear. I think I always forget how good crochet is for my mind. I’m going to be crocheting more toys, I’ve said it before but I have a couple on the go right now that I’ll share at some point, no pictures yet.

πŸ»πŸ’— making toys is something I really need to get back to doing more of, I've missed it. it puts my mind in such a better place and that's nice because I've been feeling all kinds of shitty this year. . I used some sock yarn to make this gu

I also started a sock but it’s stalled, my hand hurts when I knit on it too much. I knit a rolled cuff, my favorite and I’m knitting a random cable down the side. I really hope that I can get over the pain from sock knitting so I can continue with it.

I'm knitting a sock! but my hand hurts already β˜ΉπŸ‘Ž #knittersofinstagram #sockknittersofinstagram #socktawk #craftastherapy

Even though I am having pain from sock knitting, I went out and bought some sock yarn. My LYS started carrying MidKnit Cravings yarn, so I went in to buy a skein, I picked up Girl Next Door and also had to grab a skein of Alegria. They look like they’d go well together! They won’t go together but they probably could. The owners of MidKnit Cravings had a popup sale at a really great cafe downtown also, so I had to get down to it to buy myself a skein of their new colorway Pumpkin Spice Latte. I’m not a fan of the drink but I think the yarn is gorgeous!

I haven't knit any socks this summer but that didn't stop me from going to @prairielilyknitting when I saw that @midknitcravings yarn was there! I had to get myself a skein and of course I couldn't resist some new Allegria too. #yarnporn #manosdeluruguay

really not feeling well today but I had to make my way down to see @midknitcravings at their pop-up today, so I could get my hands on this Pumpkin Spice Latte! not a fan of the drink but this yarn is so beautiful, it's going on my needles soon! it was so

Well, I think that’s all I have to say today. I will hopefully get to posting more semi-regularly again now, a month between posts makes me feel like I can’t remember what I want to write when I sit down to blog. We’ll see how I do! Thanks for stopping by and reading today!

β™₯ Casey