Hello and welcome to another blogmas post! Today I am going to talk about a few of the things I would love to accomplish this upcoming winter, which starts December 21st, at least in the northern hemisphere. While I do tend to have some monthly goals, I thought it would be fun to share some for the entirety of winter. Some of these I have complete control over, some the weather has to cooperate with me a bit. Anyway, on to my winter bucket list!
Drink hot cocoa while it is snowing outside
Go for a walk in the snow
Wear my wool socks
Play a few board games
Read a book set in Winter
Have breakfast in bed
Drink coffee in front of the fireplace
These are mostly fun things I really want to do this winter. I find with the days getting shorter I really like to do more cozy things, but also spend some more fun time with my family. If not, I end up falling asleep as soon as the sun goes down and then waking up in the middle of the night wide awake.
Are there any things you really want to do this Winter?
Hello and welcome to a quick little list of the songs I have been listening to this month on repeat. I am normally someone who has one giant playlist with 100s of songs on it so I get a different experience, but this year I decided to make a playlist of just Christmas music for when I am feeling festive. Here are the songs that I ended up adding to that playlist.
12 Days of Christmas by Pentatonix
Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer by Pentatonix
Jingle Bell Rock by Bobby Helms
It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas by Perry Como
It’s Beginning To Look Like Christmasby Bing Crosby
Winter Wonderland (Remastered 2006)by Bing Crosby
Here Comes Santa Claus (Down Santa Claus Lane) (1947 Version)by Gene Autry
The Christmas Song (Merry Christmas To You)by Nat King Cole
Jingle Bells (Remastered 1999) by Frank Sinatra
Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeerby Gene Autry
Frosty The Snowman by Jimmy Durante
Frosty the Snowman by Gene Autry
05 Snow Miser/Heat Miser Song by Uncle Bob’s Rarities
07 Here Comes Santa Claus by Uncle Bob’s Rarities
Where Are You Christmas (From “Dr. Seuss’ How The Grinch Stole Christmas” Soundtrack) by Faith Hill
You’re A Mean One Mr. Grinch (From “Dr. Seuss’ How The Grinch Stole Christmas” Soundtrack) by Jim Carrey
Hello and welcome my perfect free winter day! Today I am going to take some time to share what I would do if I could plan my perfect winter day. This even incudes the weather, which as we know doesn’t always cooperate. As you read this, I hope you are having a wonderful day and even your own perfect day!
My perfect morning would include waking up without an alarm to see a light dusting of snow on the ground. I don’t enjoy where there is a ton of snow, but just enough to see its beauty without the mess. After waking up to my own natural alarm clock I would start my day with a cup of coffee, an audiobook, and some knitting. I truly love when I can just ease into the day. As I am knitting I am cuddled up on the couch or chair with a big fluffy blanket and a view of the snow covered yard and trees.
Later on in the day, I would have a really wonderful sandwich that someone else made for me with some potato chips. I don’t know about you, but there are two things I always think taste better when someone else makes it. The first being a sandwich and the second being popcorn. I am not sure why this is the case of me, but it is. For the rest of the afternoon I would be happy spending time with my loved ones, continuing to craft, or reading to my hearts content.
After dinner and the days activities, I would love to end my day sitting on the couch with my significant other in front of the fire place to keep toasty as the temperature outside begins to drop as the sun sets. We will be sipping on warm hot chocolate made on the stove top with some milk and mix. Other than that I am happy to be listing to a podcast together, playing a game, or just watching something on TV together. Then once we finish our hot chocolate it is time to go to bed.
If I had a free day with nothing planned, I would plan a day that was slow, calm, and allowed me to enjoy the environment around me. I enjoy days where it is not chaotic or go, go, go. I like being able to take a breath and truly appreciate the world and those around me. I think this is why my two biggest hobbies reading and knitting allow a bit of meditative quality. Now, I know that everyone enjoys different things and other people may enjoy a bit more adventure in their perfect winter day. As for me, I enjoy taking a breath and relaxing in my own space.
Hello and welcome to a little post where I am sharing some ways I destress during the holiday season. I know this time of year is meant to be a happy one, but I also feel like a lot of pressure comes with it, especially if you are hosting anything. I know for me, I make presents and sometimes I get close to my deadlines or I feel like I need to do more. The truth is, at least for me, I feel like this time of year is sometimes built up a little too much and has some very high expectations of baking cookies, finding the perfect present, and a lot of social gatherings. Don’t get me wrong they are fun, but is those are exhausting as well. I feel like with all of that going on sometimes we just need to try and take care of ourselves and remember that this is about having fun and not about being picture perfect. With that in mind, here is what I do to destress when I have a spare moment.
Watch a favorite movie
Put on music and just enjoy it, you can even sing along and dance if you want
Do a 5 min. meditation
Go for a walk
Grab a cup of coffee and enjoy the decorations
Go on a drive and see the lights in your neighborhood
Take a few deep breaths
Break tasks down into smaller parts
Look at to-do list and remove things that are not something you need to or really want to do
Take a nap, even a small cat one
Take some time to do something selfish, even for a half hour
So those are some of the ways that I destress during the holidays, mind you these are what I do and I am no professional. This is just what I notice helps me when things get a bit overwhelming during this time of the year. I do hope that you are and continue having a wonderful month and enjoying the season and are not stressing too much.
Hello and welcome to a really random post today. I wanted to take a moment to share some of my favorite things that I have discovered this past year. All of which I bought myself! I am going to go threw a few categories of items, so be prepared for a hodgepodge of things!
Kindle Paperwhite Signature Edition Essentials Bundle – I bought this bundle this year because I had to downsize and move away from physical books. So far this ereader, cover, and charging dock have worked wonderfully. It is a lot more responsive than my previous kindle and kobo as well as the screen is more sharp, at least to my eyes. I found myself reading more before bed as well.
Post-it Transparent Sticky Notes – when I did read a physical book I loved using these see-through sticky notes. I could annotate away easily without having to change my sitting position very much. Just doodled or jot down something then stuck it on the page.
Furls Streamline Resin Swirl Crochet Hooks – These are for sure an investment, but I found that this year using these work perfectly with how I naturally want to hold my crochet hook and the hand motion I use. Even when I am knitting I keep one of these on hand for when I drop a stitch.
CYPRA Interchangeable Needle Set 3.5 Inch Size – I started off knitting with larger tipped needles and I found that I knit faster and easier with shorter ones. I picked these up and I feel in love with them for a few reasons. The first being they are made of metal, I am a tight knitter so with this material I had a lot less drag on my work. The second being I was able to maneuver the needles a lot easier because they were smaller and I was not fighting them as much for smaller circumference knitting.
Tape Measure, I know this one is not glamorous and honestly any one will do. I never used a measuring tape more than when I am crocheting or knitting. I have them all over the house so I always have one on hand. If I had to pick one I really love and has held up really well it would be Clover Shiro Spring Tape, plus you can easily find it at a big box store if need be.
Tea/Coffee Handwarmer Ceramic Mug – You can get these amazing mugs left or right handed, but these mugs are amazing. I ended up having a bit of a collection of them. I love these because they are on the larger size, more coffee for me, but also because they keep my hands nice and toasty during a chilly morning or day. Plus, they are dishwasher and microwave safe.
My Bullet Journal, I am not really going to link something specific for this one, but I use it for EVERYTHING. I love that I can make it anything I want or need and is relaxable, especially in comparison to commercial planners. Which, please don;’t get me wrong those are amazing too if you find a layout that works for you. If you want to take a look at my bullet journal you can look at my category called, Bullet Journal Jottings, Writing & More. It is just really nice that you can take a notebook from the dollar store or a nicer one and turn it into something all your own.
Get owned TBR under 15 books, as with my previous update my Owned TBR down to 12 books. I ended up picking up a few books that I was really interested in and some preorders came in. Thankfully I ended up meeting this goal!
See a new place, I ended up visiting about 4 new yarn shops this year. Not quite what I had in mind for this goal, but technically I did do it.
Teach myself something new, In my first post on the topic I talked about learning color work, cables, and bobbles in knitting. In addition to taking a genealogy research class.
Knit a sweater, achieved for sure, I created 5 of them!
Knit 6 pairs of socks, I did it, I knit 6 pairs of socks this year! Plus they are getting a ton of use now that it is chilly. Wool socks really are just the best!
Crochet a sweater, as I said in my last update this one is not happening and I am totally alright with that. I ended up knitting 5 garments that I really love.
Create 10 things with my hands, as of writing this I am happy to share that I have made a total of 17 projects this year. I took on a lot of bigger projects this year so I wasn’t sure how it would work in the long run. I have created less, but I really am enjoying that I am making a lot more.
Not Completed: 2
I have successfully achieved 7 of my 9 goals for this year. Overall, that is about 78%, not the best. To be fair though these are goals I made a year ago when I was into different things and had no idea what the year would bring. I am really proud of what I achieved this year.
Hello and welcome to a little post where I share 5 books that I think are great to gift for this upcoming holiday season. Well, actually you can gift these at any time, but I know I am looking for some gift inspiration and I though some others might be as well. Anyway, here are some books I think will be great to give to someone!
Tokyo Ueno Station by Miri Yū, this mixture of magical realism and historical fiction is set in Tokyo, Japan where we follow the main character of Kazu, who is now a ghost. You follow his as he remembers different parts of his life. Which, normally I would say is really boring, as least for me. Yū mixing this with magical elements as well as their ability to make you care so much for the characters in this book so quickly. I wont say that this is a happy book, it is being told to you by someone who has already past, but it is contemplative. For someone who enjoys discussions about society and others along those lines, this could be a book for them. Especially since it is under 200 pages. Trigger Warnings for Tokyo Ueno Station
Before the Coffee Gets Cold by by Toshikazu Kawaguchi, this is another translated work that might be better suited for those who enjoy more fantasy. This book is part of a series, but could be easily read on its own. It revolves around a coffee shop that has the ability to let its patrons travel back in time, with some rules of course. It is mainly told through the story of four patrons, in doing so you learn about the shop, but also their stories as well. This can get emotional as well, but the atmosphere of the shop is welcoming and supportive as much as they can be. Trigger Warnings for Before the Coffee Gets Cold
The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead, this historical fiction account of a woman escaping slavery is a good choice to gift someone who enjoys both history and fiction. While this book does deal violence and abuse, I think it is worth a read. This engaging novel, like I said earlier, follows Cora. Core has made the decision to escape and this novel follows her as she makes the terrifying and dangerous journey. You are also told more about her past as you read as well. In telling her story, Whitehead also is looking at what is freedom and what that means and sugar coats nothings. If I am being honest, I would recommend any of the books written by Whitehead that I have read, his writing is clear and he is very talented in conveying what he means and emotions. Trigger Warnings for The Underground Railroad
How to Think Like a Roman Emperor: The Stoic Philosophy of Marcus Aurelius by Donald J. Robertson, this is a more philosophical book so you would be the best judge to see if this would be a good pick for your friend or family member. That being said this book takes a look at Stoicism, which is a way of looking at life. It is philosophy that was developed around the 3rd century BCE, but this book brings these ideas into the modern world. It was a very interesting read personally, it broke things down nicely and I didn’t feel like I was reading a text book or an antique text. I actually did a bit of a review of this, Reading Taste Test | @jacksepticeye, which I think will give you a better look at it.
Carmilla by J. Sheridan Le Fanu, for the person who enjoys classics or horror this might be the perfect read. You are going to find some outdated themes and some things that are just NOT appropriate and never should have been. With those things being said, if a person really enjoys horror and classics and keeps those things in mind, this could be a good gift. Carmilla is noted as being the original vampire story, that alone is what drew me in, classic vampires, could be interesting! Even with this being originally written in the 1800s, there is a lot going on in this book; vampires, LGBTQ themes, and frights all around. The atmosphere in this book is palpable and has you on your toes as soon as you pick it up. I know when I read this I was instantly pulled in. Even though this is an updated edition of the book, it does still have a lot of the writing styles/themes that you would see as “classic”. Trigger Warnings for Carmilla
Those are some books that I think might be good editions to your shopping list when it comes to gifting, but please look at the trigger warnings for the books above to make the final decision.
Hello All! I am really excited about writing and sharing this post. I am normally not a huge movie watcher, but this time of year I get really nostalgic and love rewatching some movies from my childhood that I just absolutely love. Without going on too much with this introduction here are some of the movies I adore watching this time of year.
This movie is not just one that is from my childhood, but was one from my parents as well. It was something they were really excited to share with me as I was growing up. The songs are catchy and the characters of the Miser Brothers are just the best! Just writing this I am already humming some of the songs. This movie starts off with Santa giving up on delivering presents because he was advised by his doctor after falling ill and he also feels like no one cares anymore. From there, many try to prove him wrong and the shenanigan’s go from there.
I don’t know why, but when I think of the Grinch, this is the version I think of. I don’t think of the animated version. I think of Jim Carrey and him walking back and forth in the mailroom lecturing Cindy Lou Who. Also, who can say no to the cute puppy that played Max. This is another one that I hum along to the songs as well. It just sets up the feeling of the holidays for me.
While I will say, I do very much enjoy the most recent remake in 2019. This is the version I loved from a very young age. This is also one of my all time favorite books and I read and watched this movie so many times and this is just a comfort cozy watch for me. It is like coming home. Sometimes with the chaos of the holidays it is really nice watching something that I know what is going to happen, I know what is going to be said, there is no surprises at all. I just feel really comforted while watching.
This is again a really festive and funny movie in my eye. What happens when your workahaolic dad you have nothing in common with or spend any quality time with ends up turning into Santa Clause after Santa falls off your roof?! It is just a really fun adventure story as well as a really heart warning story about a son and father.
Hello and welcome to a post where I am simply going to share some of the books that I own and want to read. I have really tried to get my TBR down to 0, and I am still working towards that goal. The main reason I want my owned TBR so low is because I really want to hear about a book or have a friend mention one to me and I can just read it as soon as I am interested to avoid spending the money and then loosing interest and it sits on my shelf forever, then I end up donating it. I am really glad that I am able to donate books, but I am always so sad to do it with books that have not been read. I am going to break down my list by format of the books. I will also add an asterisk if I also have an audiobook copy of the book. Anyway, here are the books on my owned TBR.
Not to bad at all, I have a total of 12 unread books that are waiting for me to dive into. I am really happy that I was able to get this number so low and I am looking forward to continuing towards my goal of 0 books. I am also making a move towards ebooks slowly. The main reason being room, it is just not feasible for me in the space I am in to keep a lot of books or have books on hand. I also am able to access my library to save some money and still enjoy one of my passions.
Hello and welcome to a little post where I am going to share the 9 things I plan to make in 2023! If you are not familiar with this, pretty much you just pick 9 things you really want to make in the new year, new years resolutions of sorts. Most people plan to make more overall, but this is to help focus on the projects you are either really excited for or you need to get done in the new year. For me I don’t have any HAVE to makes, but I do have 9 things I really want to create this year.
Kuutar Beret by Sari Nordlund, I was gifted two skeins of yarn this year and I really wanted to find a project I was able to use them both in and I ended up coming across this beautiful hat! I have never made a beret before or even worn one fort hat matter, but I fell in love with it as soon as I saw it! This beret almost looks like there is a flower on top of it, it is a combination of lace work and cables.
Karelia by Midori Hirose, Last year I bought a kit for thing sweater thinking I was going to have time to make it for my holiday sweater, well turns out I did not. I do want to still make it though and my new goal is to have it done in time for Valentines Day. I am thinking this mainly because I bought the kit with the main color being in red and I can’t think of any other holidays that would work for off the top of my head. I also really feel like the flower motif running along the yolk is a bit romantic.
Soldotna Crop by Caitlin Hunter, this is another sweater I bought a kit for. I picked up a kit from the wonderful Voolenvine Yarns. I fell in love with her color scheme she used a while ago. The one day I got a notification in my email that she was making kits and I knew I needed to put in an order. I lucked out and was able to snag a kit, she sells out fast. My goal is to have it done in time for Summer 2023 because of all the fun pattern color work would really be nice and fun!
Velvet Mirror Cowl by Andrea Mowry, I was hoping to make this one done before the weather got to cold, but my goal is to get this one done ASAP so I have something to keep my neck warm when it get super cold out. I also really want to use this project to practice my two handed color work. It is small and I feel like it will give a good deal of practice, without it being too much. The color work is also pretty straight forwards, it is mostly geometrical shapes such as diamonds and chevrons.
Winnow by Olivia Sczepanik, I have a sweater quantity of yarn in my stash and I needed to pin it to a project after I decided to not make something else. I was flicking through one of my issues of Pom Pom and came across this open cardigan sweater. I have never made an open cardigan, but I fell in love with the cables and new this is the project I was going to use the yarn for instantly.
Missoni Accomplished by Espace Tricot, When I was first learning to make sweaters I honestly was HORRIBLE at buying the correct type of yarn. I ended up having so much leftovers from a sweater that I could make a whole other one. Did I mention how bad I was? Anyway, I have enough to make this cute and fun sweater so I am thankful about that. I am really glad that I had enough of both colors because I found out the yarn I have is discontinued and I really want to do the three giant wavy lines across the body.
Woodlark Shawl by Fiber Tales, This project is going to be a huge deal for me. The first being it is the first item I am going to be making and steeking. Steeking is where you knit something in the round with the intention of cutting it after you are done you have a flat piece of knitting. This shawl is knit in the round, at the end you reinforce the section you are going to cut, then hope you did a good enough job and cut all the hard work you have done. It is scary, but I feel like it is something I want to give a go, at least once. It is always fun and sometimes terrifying to try something good, but how else will you learn? I did find a pattern to practice on that is a cup holder so I might knit this first and steek that one, but we shall see what I decided to do later on in the year. I also really love the color work on the shawl. It has a mix of natural themes such as leaves and flowers, but geometrical patterns as well. I also really loved how busy it was, but toned down depending on the colors you choose.
Travel Mode 2.0 by Susanne Sommer, this year I was lucky enough to go to a yarn festival. I decided I was going to pick up yarn from a bunch of different venders to make one project. I felt like this pattern will really show off all the different yarns nicely by having huge color blocks and serve as a really nice and usable memento of the fun I had.
Underwing Mitts by Erica Heusser, This is something that is kind of in the same vein as the velvet mirror cowl. It revolves around a lot of colorwork with some duplicate stitches, but is also a project time I have never made before. Mittens. I am not sure why, but mittens are something that seems to be really difficult, whish is odd because I have made hats, scarfs, sweaters, socks, and a few more things. For some reason this intimidates me. But, I feel like after I concquer two handed color work this will be a lot less intimidating. Baby steps. Also, the really beautiful moth front and center on these mitts was just so beautiful.
Anyway, those are the projects I really want to make in the new year. I know in 2021 I made about 36 projects. In 2022 I have made about 20, maybe a few more. I have not done a full count in a bit, but I feel like I can for sure get these 9 done and then add in some more spontaneous projects as well. As with reading, I am a complete mood knitter.