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Saturday, December 31, 2011

Vocabulary

Ambition:  thinking you can start a major project less than 48 hours before you need to have it wrapped and under the tree

Stupidity:  (a) thinking the project is "quick" and "easy"; (b) not planning on time to block it

Insanity:  forging ahead anyway, determined to have it finished in time

Despair:  at 1 am the night before the project needs to be finished, with at least 2-3 hours of work still to be done, and immediately after sewing in the ends and cutting them, discovering that you joined the last motif backwards and twisted

Desperation:  very very carefully finding the yarn end you just cut and very very gently un-sewing it from the motif so that you can just rip out and redo the last few stitches rather than having to cut the motif out and start it over from scratch

Comfort:  telling yourself that took less time than cutting the motif and starting it over (this actually probably is true)

Relief:  having the thing finished and blocking on your bedroom floor an hour before the recipient arrives  (No, it was not dry when they needed to leave, but it was close.  We used a hair dryer to speed things up at the end.)

Tears of Joy:  the response from the recipient that makes it all worth it  <3

Sunday, December 18, 2011

I should probably be freaking out right now.

Or maybe more accurately, I should probably be crocheting.  Christmas is a week away and I have at least 3 projects to finish, another to start, and a fifth that I won't even attempt to start before Christmas - the recipient of that one is getting a photo of the pattern and the yarn and an IOU.  *blush*  I think I'm still ok on time, since Jimi has taken Wed and Thurs off work and has Fri off anyway, and my plan for those days is pretty much to let him handle the toddler while I crochet like a madwoman.  Except of course that 2 of those projects need to be finished by Fri because that's when we're doing Christmas with Jimi's dad.  And I'm not sure how much work time I can count on on Friday.

Of course it also means that I should also be doing things like putting the laundry away and cleaning the bathroom, so there is less of it to do Wed/Thurs and I *can* spend that time crocheting instead of getting the house ready for company on Friday.

This is obviously why I have suddenly decided to post here for the first time in almost 4 months.

Yeah... I should probably be freaking out right now....

Saturday, September 3, 2011

What DYT Has Done For Me, Part 2 - Discovering My Wings

 I took a deep breath and clicked on the button to choose the Type 1 course.  And with that one little click, my whole world changed.


Ok, yes, I realize how melodramatic that sounds.  But it's true.  I didn't even realize at first just how true.  And it really isn't about the fashion, either - that's really just the icing on the cake.  It's new insights and breakthroughs I've had about myself that are truly exciting.

The first breakthrough I had was in trying to wrap my head around the idea that I really truly am a Type 1.  Type 1 is bright, animated, upward, light, airy, random, extroverted, bubbly, enthusiastic, cute, generating ideas.  Type 2 is soft, subtle, gentle, calm, flowing, introverted, sensitive, graceful, elegant, planning details.  How could I possibly be both?  What I needed to remember is that there is a range of levels of motion within each movement, and my unique expression is influenced by my secondary energy, my life experiences, and lots of other things unique to *me*.  I am not a "textbook" Type 1 - what I call bouncy balls and fireworks.  Rather, I describe my energy as "a dreamer, head in the clouds" energy.  It is still a very light, airy, full of ideas energy - but it also has a soft, gentle, graceful element to it.  Think Belle in Disney's Beauty & the Beast.  Thinking of it in that way allowed me to start to truly accept and embrace this part of my nature in a way I hadn't been able to before.

The second breakthrough I had came when I wasn't even expecting it.  Doesn't it often happen that way?  Since Type 1's are so animated and enthusiastic, it is common for us to feel like we need to be more serious, or tone down our brightness so we will be taken seriously.  I'd heard and read that in several places, but it never seemed to apply to me until the word responsibility came up in a separate conversation.  I haven't felt that I needed to be more serious, but I have definitely felt I needed to be (more?) grown up / responsible.  There were some pretty traumatic circumstances and events going on for most of my childhood, and as the oldest of my siblings, I ended up taking on a lot of responsibility at a very young age.  Also, and I had never even realized this before, I think I developed a belief that in the middle of all that hurting, it wasn't ok to ever *not* feel that pain.  I wish someone had told me then - "It's ok to feel hurt and sad and scared and angry.  It's good to feel those things.  But it's also ok and good to have fun and feel happy sometimes.  It's ok to just be a little girl.  Feeling happy doesn't mean that you don't still have all those other feelings, or that you don't care about the things that are happening to you and your family, or that those things don't matter.  It's not a betrayal to the people you love.  You don't have to carry this huge weight and burden all the time."  For years, I have felt like I've been living under a cloud.  I have been!  A cloud of belief that says "Life hurts.  People betray you.  You don't have any power.  Happiness is for the people who "have".  You are one of the "have-nots".  Wow!  No wonder I've struggled with depression!  What hopeless limiting beliefs!

Now I am replacing those beliefs with


It is ok to have fun.  I can be responsible and have fun too.  They are not mutually exclusive.  


Life can be fun.  


Work can be fun.  


I don't have to wait for work to make work fun - *I* can make work fun.


I can make work fun by *being* fun.


I can make work fun by being fun by being *me*.


Wow.  These are messages that are striking down to the very core of who I am.  They are heart beliefs, central to everything I think, feel, say, do, whether I'm aware of it or not.  Changing these deep beliefs has and will have a ripple effect.  Already, in just a few days, I feel so much more confident, less stressed, less anxious, free.  And it shows; I've had multiple people comment on it.  I told my sister yesterday that I feel like I've forgotten how to have fun (or maybe I never even knew to begin with) and I am just figuring it out again.  It's a revelation that fills me with awe, wonder, and excitement.

I feel like a flower blossoming.

Or like a dragonfly, just emerging from the cocoon and discovering my wings.  I have the whole sky to explore, and I can't wait to see where the wind will take me.

What DYT Has Done For Me, Part 1 - The Journey

Just as fair warning, this could get rather long.  I will try not to let it go too long, but... so much has changed for me over the last week and even just the last few days; I am being flooded with new insights and realizations and they are all just bubbling up and overflowing out of me, and I just have to share!

Firstly, a tiny little background.  If you are not familiar with Dressing Your Truth or Energy Profiling, it is a system designed by Carol Tuttle to outline 4 different groups, or Types, of people.  Everyone fits into one of these 4 Types, but the range of expression and how it plays out is unique for each individual person.  It is a really interesting way to learn more about yourself and others.  That is the Energy Profiling side of things.  What is really neat and unique is that Carol has taken it a step further for women and created some guidelines about how to dress based on your Type.  It sounds like it might be limiting, but actually it's very freeing.  The premise and foundational belief is that EVERY woman is beautiful and that when the things you wear (clothing, hairstyle, makeup, accessories, etc) are in harmony with who you are on a core level - as opposed to trying to fit a certain fashion standard or attempt to present yourself in a certain way to counterbalance perceived weakness - when your outside is reflecting your inside, it allows your true unique beauty to shine through and be a blessing to yourself and the people around you.  If you haven't already, I would strongly encourage you to visit Carol's blog to learn more about it.  And if you make it to the end of this post, I hope you'll see why I encourage it - because that's really what I want to talk about:  how learning, accepting, and embracing my Type has affected me on a very deep core level.

I first learned about DYT almost a year ago through an online message board I participate in.  It was a pretty hot topic at the time, I've always been interested in both fashion and personality profiling, and I was intrigued at the idea of combining the two.  I started trying to figure out what Type I am through conversations on my message board and by following Carol's blog.  I bought her Energy Profiling Bundle with her book "It's Just My Nature," then I bought her Beauty Profiling Bundle with her book "Discover Your Personal Beauty Profile".  I had mostly settled that I thought I was a Type 2, the Subtle Soft woman.  There was (and still is) an awful lot about that Type that really clicked for me.  Then it was suggested to me that I might be a Type 1, the Bright Animated woman, and that really threw me for a loop.  No way, I thought.  That's not me.  Of course, that very thought is actually a pretty strong indication that that IS me.  Doh.  I was really strongly encouraged to consider it, though, so I went back through the profiling courses, read back through both books, trying to come from a perspective of being a 1 instead of a 2.  And I began to see where maybe that fit better than I thought it did.  But then I had a problem - which fit more?  I express a LOT of both of those movements - which one was dominant?  I finally settled on T1 and have been trying to live and dress that way as best I could for most of this year.  But in the back of my head, I was never entirely confident that I had gotten it "right".

Fast forward to a couple weeks ago, when Carol offered a sale on everything in her store, including the full DYT course.  I'd been saving for it anyway, intending it to be a Christmas gift to myself, but the sale coincided with my birthday.  I didn't have quite the full amount saved, but close enough that my husband, knowing how important it was to me, said to just go ahead and get it.  Now I had a new problem.  You can only get the course for one type, meaning I had to really commit to what type I am.  All the questions I'd been asking in the back of my head were suddenly a really big deal.  Fortunately, I am not the only one who has had this problem, and Carol and her staff are truly dedicated to supporting women in discovering and honoring their true natures.  They had done a couple of conference calls earlier this year specifically for women who had been through the books, been through the online tools, and were still having trouble, and the recordings of those calls were available in my member area after I had purchased the course.  I only had to listen to one of those calls.  There were several things in that call that really rang true to me, and I came away from it with a new confidence and assurance that I am indeed a Type 1, Bright Animated woman.  I took a deep breath and clicked on the button to choose the Type 1 course.  And with that one little click, my whole world changed.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Alpaca!


Yesterday we (me, Jimi, Gabriel, and our friend R) spent the afternoon walking around the Midwest Alpaca Festival.  So. Much. FUN!!!  We walked around the vendors area first, scoping out what purchases we wanted to make.  I had my eyes peeled for something special for my Mom for Mother's Day (found something too!) and of course something special for me too.  ; )  I didn't take any pictures up in the vendor area, although there were a couple stalls with these very lightweight sheer shawls or ponchos with fiber felted onto them in random designs - not really my taste to actually wear myself, but very very pretty.  I should have taken a couple pictures of those.  Oops.






What I did take lots of pictures of, was the animals.  We walked all around the pens downstairs, oohing and cooing over them.  Did you know alpacas hum?!  And if you're petting them at the time, you can feel the vibration, kind of like a cat's purr.  Totally melting over here!  R and I kept saying how we'd like to bring one home with us.  LOL.  Someday maybe!






This one's the one I "claimed" - her name is Dr Pepper!  I do love me my DP.  LOL.





We got to chat a little with the owner of these two sweet sisters.  The smaller fawn colored one is 8 months and the older white one is 20 months, and already being shown and bred as an adult!  I laughed and said, "What do you think of that, Gabriel, she's almost the same age you are!"  and the owner told us that the mama of these two had just won an award and her name was Lady Gabriel!  I didn't catch what award she'd just one - there were ribbons EVERYWHERE in all different colors as people showed off their wins from all different shows, not just this one.  Of course owners and breeders were making all sorts of connections, buying, selling, arranging for breeding, so all those ribbons were advertising and marketing.  ; )  I didn't even try to keep track of them. 






Some alpaca facts.  = )  I'm so amazed about the burrs, that's just crazy!  I bet you can tell pretty easy, but here's an Huacaya (pronounced wa-KI-ah, "ki" sounds like "high") -


and here is a Suri - 




You can see where the names come from!  Both are extremely soft, and the Suri fiber has a silky quality to it, including a bit of shine, even in the adults.  Gabriel was drawn to the Suri's especially and kept pointing and reaching for them.  Most of the animals were shy enough that they pulled away, though a few came up to the fences where we could pet them.  And one very kind owner held one of his animals close enough to the pen for Gabriel to pet her, which just totally made his day!  (We did not ask him to do this, and Gabriel is generally very good about being gentle with animals.)

By the time we walked all around all the pens (with Gabriel on my back in the mei tai the whole way, phew!), we were all tired and hungry and ready to head out.  Plus we still had a walk to the car - not a terribly long walk, but we had parked a bit away from the event so we wouldn't have to pay for parking.  On the walk to the car, though, we saw a whole flock of goslings.  Awww.


Wednesday, April 27, 2011

A Note on Multi-Sensory Easter Baskets

Firstly, yes, I have pictures, but they aren't uploaded yet and I'm just going to seize the moment to write this while I can and edit the photos in later.  Sorry.

Secondly, the background - while shopping for Gabriel's Easter basket goodies, I had a brilliant idea.  (This should probably have been my first warning).  See, I didn't really want to get a basket - the handle sticks up and makes it an odd shape to fit onto a shelf or anything, which makes it difficult to reuse for storage purposes after the candy is all eaten, and I really didn't want to waste money on something that was just going to get trashed.  So instead, I got a small Sterilite tote and 20 pounds of rice.  Figured I'd hide the plastic eggs full of candy in the rice for a nice contained easy "egg hunt" and then afterwards the tub of rice is itself a great sensory toy.  Yeah.... here's my thoughts 4 days later.

1.  I can see why this is a great sensory toy for little kids - I actually kinda enjoyed digging my hands through the rice.
2.  I had no idea rice was so dusty.
3.  Rice is the perfect size and shape to wedge itself  under your fingernails (much less of a problem for my toddler).
4.  I should have listened to my husband when he suggested taping the eggs shut.
5.  I should have remembered to put "basket" and child in empty tub for easy clean up.
6.  A Sterilite tub, even with a lid on it, is not nearly enough to contain 20 lbs of rice.  Rice travels.  Especially when you didn't tape the easter eggs shut.
7.  Hiding candy in the rice was a bad idea.  My toddler's only interest in the bucket of rice is for the candy.  Which is now full of rice because I didn't tape the easter eggs shut.
8.  I want to know what happened to the rest of the Reese's peanut butter bunnies.  We started with 5, I ate 2, and I certainly didn't give any of those prizes to the toddler.  So either my husband and the kidlet ate the other 3 when I wasn't looking (entirely likely) or else they are so well buried in the rice that even I can't find them.  Either way, I'm pouting.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

There May Be Hope Yet

Hope of Spring, that is.  In fact, I'm going to say we may eve have turned the corner and be well and truly done with winter.  (I do hope I'm not jinxing anything by saying that.)  But the weather has been quite nice, in the mid 50's for most of the week, and even up to 80 today!  Plus, despite the promised thunderstorms, there hasn't been a drop of rain all day.  It's actually been quite nice - a little on the muggy side but with a nice breeze to keep the air moving and make it a very nice day to be outside.  Which is exactly where we've been!  Tuesday or Wednesday (can't remember which day,) we went to the botanical gardens and actually saw *gasp* flowers!  I only had my cell phone with me, no camera (bad mama!) so nothing outstanding for photos, but I just had to try anyway.  I've been quite green with envy over all the lovely flower photos I see on everyone else's blogs these days and quite antsy waiting for some color to start popping up in my little corner of the world.  Hopefully putting them all together in a collage kind of makes up for the cell phone camera?  Maybe?  Well I'm going to say it does.  And I made the background green, because let's face it, the grass sure isn't yet.  :(


In other adventures, this week, we went to the zoo on Thursday with some friends and to the park today with Daddy.  And we got new shoes.  Because someone was in a sharing kind of mood at the zoo.


 Yup.  He dropped it right into the prairie dog exhibit.  Ok, to be fair, he didn't do it on purpose.  I think it actually just fell off  his foot.  The exhibit is set up so that you stand on a ramp above the prairie dogs and look down into the exhibit.  The "fence" is just a rope net.  Certainly enough to keep a person out, but not, apparantly, toddler sized sneakers.  Doh.  Yes, we did go find someone to let them know about it so they could get it out, but I decided I'd had enough of theom falling off his feet everywhere we go and this made an excellent excuse to  buy new shoes.

And just because he's so stinkin adorable, I'll leave you with a random shot of the red panda.  :)