yarn along

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Phoebe and I did school yesterday sprawled out on a blanket under a great spreading maple in our backyard.  We began reading The Penderwicks.  I’m not even sure what led me to this book but I remember hearing somewhere along the way recommendations of it.  We’ve been listening to The Little House on the Prairie series on audio books, too, and Phoebe’s been re-inspired to run through the yard with her bonnet strings dangling around her neck like Laura.

I’m still not reading much lately.  Odd for me, I know,  but by the time evening comes and I’m free to read I just don’t have much brain power left.  I’m in need of some light hearted stories, so if you have any book recommendations, I’d love to hear them!

I’ve mainly been working on my waterrock vest for the Appalachian Knits spring KAL that I’m participating in.  The designer of the pattern is my friend from middle + high school days, Jennifer, and she is the one who taught me to knit!  So it’s really fun working on her pattern.  Everything she makes is gorgeous.  I’ve almost finished the body and ready to begin arm hole shaping.  I’m adding another inch or so to the body since this is a cotton/linen blend yarn and I plan to wash/dry it, so I’m adding length to account for shrinkage.  Plus I have a long torso, I think.  Anyway, I’m really enjoying knitting it.  I’ve started some socks for Phoebe too and I plan to knit a couple pairs for each of the kids and eventually a pair for myself too.

Joining with Nicole’s Crafting On, a weekly craft link up, as well as another knitting friend here.


yarn along


My yarn along posts have been missing lately, due to all the craziness of moving and settling, but also because my beloved Ginny of Small Things has decided to stop hosting the weekly yarn along link-up.  Sob.  I really miss the weekly community and chatter of knitters, many of whom somehow have become friends over the strange world of the internet.  I don’t know exactly what I’ll do in the wake of all of this, whether I’ll still share regularly or not, but somehow the weekly posts helped encourage me to finish projects and to read more, and I miss that.  I’ve been hardly reading at all since moving, I think I just need a good light-hearted book.  Any recommendations?

I’m working on a few projects, mainly a water rock vest that my friend designed (and gifted me the pattern!!  She is the most generous + sweet person).  Knitting it in Knit Picks CotLin yarn, which is new to me and really soft to work with–and inexpensive!  Then I recently cast on a featherweight cardigan for myself.  I bought this yarn awhile ago with Christmas money and it is dreamy in every way.  It’s Madelinetosh Euro Sock in color way Cold Shoulder.  So soft, such a perfect dusty lavender with flecks of mauve.  It’s the most indulgent knitting, and I’m trying not to fly through it as my yarn funds have run out!

By the way, I’ve finished my campside shawl awhile ago and I haven’t even had a chance to block it or weave in ends.  I’ve been wearing it nonstop, unwoven ends a-dangling.  I love it love it love it and think it’s my favorite knit so far.

I’ve been reading/browsing through this design/decorating book, A Touch of Farmhouse Charm with a ton of do-able and cute DIY projects as inspiration for our old/new home. 🙂  It’s a 1950s rancher, but I intend to have a touch of farmhouse charm up in here.

Happy knitting and reading friends, wherever you may be!

Joining with Nicole’s Crafting On and also my new knitterly friend Being Bodecker.
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Falling Free


You guys.  I am so terribly behind on posting a review for this book and I feel awful about it because IT IS SUCH AN INCREDIBLE BOOK!  It deserved a really great, lengthy, shining blog post a long time ago.  I received it last fall when it released and read it within a week or so.  Honestly it was maybe in my top five favorite reads from 2016.  It was one of those books you finish and want to immediately purchase copies of for everyone you love.  I highly recommend it!

Shannan Martin’s book Falling Free: Rescued from the life I always wanted came into my hands in the middle of our house search.  In a sense I was resistant to reading it, since Martin’s book is a memoir sharing about their leaving behind the life they thought they always wanted for something that seemed far riskier, smaller, and challenging.  Its good to read something like this while in the midst of your own home search.  What Martin was leaving behind–a cute farmhouse, a mini homestead, a comfortable community–these are some of the things my husband and I are looking for and dreaming about.  And not that there is anything wrong with having a farmhouse or a homestead or a wonderful church community.  But Martin sure does challenge our notions of what we need, what we expect, what we feel entitled to, what we think God would have for us, what we think is safe, what we hope for.  She brings perspective.  She gives courage to truly abandon your life to the faithfulness of God, even in the face of the risk and discomfort involved.  She holds out the glory of Jesus and the life of following and obeying Him as higher and greater than our small dreams, our small hopes for a comfortable, safe, monochromatic life.

An author I have loved, Emily P. Freeman, has highly recommended Martin’s writing, which is what led me to check out her first book. I was not disappointed!  She is at turns hilarious, witty, and yet poignant and insightful.  She can turn a phrase like few authors I’ve read, bringing fresh insight and conviction to our typical American way of life and thinking.  And her taco recipe has become a regular staple in our home.  (Thank you, Shannon.)

I can’t tell you more about it because I simply can’t decide what to emphasize most.  Just go read it.  If you at all feel bound up, go read it.  If while you have most comforts and pleasures accessible at your right hand yet can’t shake the niggling sense that you’re missing something, go read it.  If you’re hungry for the kingdom of God, go read it.  If you’re hungry for more of God, go read it.  If you’re just plain bored, go read it.

Read at your own risk.  Prepare to be perturbed, disturbed, challenged, convicted, awakened, and set free from the life you think you want to the life God would have for you.

Thank you to Book Look Bloggers for a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.  All opinions expressed are my own.




yarn along


My lila sweater is blocking, only needs some ribbing on the neck and then weaving in ends.  I cannot wait for it to dry so I can finish and wear it!  Meanwhile, I’ve been itching to knit a shawl for some time.  The Campside shawl by Alicia Plummer has been in my queue for quite some time and it’s a free pattern that seems simple and produces a nice large cozy shawl, perfect for spring evenings.  So I’m gauge swatching for that, knitting with Madelinetosh DK in color way Harvest.

Also, I’m still reading Long Days of Small Things but also checked out Braving It from the library and have a hard time putting either book down.  I highly recommend BOTH!  Not much time for reading this week, but I squeeze in a few pages before bed.

Joining with Ginny’s weekly yarn along link up.
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yarn along


Sorry for the fuzzy picture, it’s a gray rainy day here so my camera didn’t want to focus.  Anywhoo… still knitting my Lila sweater.  I’m thankful for an easy, meditative, mindless knit in this busy week of last minute packing as we prepare to move this weekend.  It’s easy to pick up in the evenings and unwind while working on it.  I’ve just joined sleeves and am working on yoke shaping.  It’s been unseasonably warm here in NC in February so I’m not sure if it will be cold enough to wear it when I finally finish!  But I hope for some more winter weather before spring comes.

I am so greatly enjoying Long Days of Small Things (affiliate link).  I find myself craving to read it during the day (but no time!!) and eagerly looking forward to squeezing in a few pages when I’m in bed.  It’s a paradigm shifter for moms who have found that since becoming a mom there is no time anymore for the pursuit of God.  We hear this so often from our fellow mom friends, don’t we?  Even from our own hearts–where is the time, the energy, the finances, the brain power to put thoughts together to pursue God as we once did?  So many mothers longing to be faithful in this trying season of sacrifice, yet feeling like failures because we feel that we must choose between our own pursuit of God and satisfying the constant demands of our little ones.  No matter which we choose, we are tempted to feel like a failure for forsaking the other.  Here’s a little excerpt from the first chapter:

“Children are consuming.  They leave us with nothing left to give ourselves or anyone else.  But this is the perfect training ground for our spirits, the very setting many disciplines are designed to produce.  Our demanding, beloved children are what we create–they are our spiritual path.  What if we looked through new eyes and discovered that into our very life stages our Creator has placed impressions of himself, reflections of his strength and beauty, a spiritual path laid out just for us?”

What I’m also loving about this book is the “practices” McNiel includes at the end of each chapter.  They are simple, immediately attainable and small practices such as paying attention to your breathing throughout the day, walking, eating, washing.  All the things we do cyclicly each day, finding these human activities to be worshipful.  I have found myself thinking about this as I’ve been going about my usual routines this week and it has so deeply encouraged and helped!  Just to realize sometimes that I’m holding my breath in stress–to take a deep breath and to say to the Lord as I do so: I’m breathing in your grace and steadfast love in this moment.  I’m breathing out my fears and worries to you.  Just this little prayer, over and over throughout the day–how can it bring such joy?  But it does.

Anyway.. for any mom in the trenches: READ this book!  I’m only a few chapters in but I believe I will love it to the end.

Joining with Ginny of Small Things today and her weekly yarn along.


yarn along


I’m kniting on my Lila sleeve number two, and loving this project so much.  I can’t wait to wear it but also never want it to end! 🙂  No second sleeve syndrome over here.  I did, however, cast on for a pair of baby socks for a friend and also need to finish up another small gift item for someone else, as well.  So I’m forcing myself to set aside my lila for a few days.  Maybe.

I am crazy, crazy I know.. because I selected two books to review this month while I’m packing and moving and trying to buy a house because I simply don’t have enough to do already.  Actually, I just couldn’t resist these books!  I cannot wait to dive into this one on motherhood.  I need regular motherhood check-ups in this busy season of Long Days of Small Things.  This title grabbed me immediately and I so hope this book lives up to my expectations!  I HOPE to review it this month, so I will let you know what I think.  I did finish up The Broken Way, I tried to make it last as long as I could.  I didn’t allow myself to mark it up at all because I just wanted to savor and read and let it wash over me.  I loved it so, so very much, and will be rereading it maybe immediately.  And this time mark it up.  Please go get a copy of it!  Ann is such a gift and such an encouragement to me time and again.  And, if you notice, she also endorses the above book.

I’m linking up with Ginny’s weekly yarn along and also Nicole’s KCCO.  
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yarn along


Still knitting on my Lila sweater, about half way through the first sleeve.  This yarn and pattern are pure comfort.

Still reading The Broken Way.  I just read the part last night where Voskamp talks about Lark at Elizabeth’s funeral, so it was neat to hear that little mention of Ginny and her family.

Joining with Ginny today and her weekly yarn along where we share our current reads and knits, and also with Nicole of Frontier Dreams.
Affiliate links included in this post.