Putting Fear to the Side

I’ve entered into a period of reflection in my life… Or had a strange dream.

For as long as I can remember, my dreams have predicated my reality. Is that even the right word? Well, to be sure, it is the right word for the feeling but grammar may dictate I look another way.

But back on subject…

My significant others have awakened to find me furious with them for dream cheating. And not in the playful way of some. No, I was honest to god angry. To be fair (to myself), I have never dreamed of a slight like this from a partner when they were indeed guileless.

Others have come back to me days, months, and even years later to bring up a dream I told them about that came true in some fashion for them.

My dream life is an oddly interactive thing. It is a world unto itself wherein events conspire and collude and time doesn’t pass the same but does seem to revolve in some weird way.

Why am I babbling about the esoteric? Because.

Lately, I’ve had a block in my creativity. Books languish as I find myself unable to write a man who expresses compassion, art all seems trite and forced, and my crochet work…

I can’t finish a project. I have many on my hook, many more in the planning stages. But when it comes to finishing things off, I have yet to manage to get even the smallest thing done.

For my sister’s birthday, I was working on an art bag. Not a bag for art but one that was art in and of itself. Except, I found myself writing the pattern at the same time and frustration grew.

For Mother’s Day, I was at a loss. In the end, I made two bookmarks. The first was passable but the second was cute enough that I wanted to keep it myself (‘Those are always the best gifts’, so say my mom).

But still, I remained stunted. I put the bag to the side and began working on a Gilmore Girls themed… something for my sister.

Then I woke this morning. My dream was fresh and a bit terrifying in its regularity. And suddenly, I felt the urge to write. You see, I’ve spent an inordinate amount of time living in a world dictated by fear and distracted by the mundane. Last night, something clicked within me and when I awoke this morning, the dream had done as dreams do and I felt, if not a release of pressure, at least the will to fight against it.

In my time, I’ve had these moments of clarity when I realized that something had to shake. In the past, when I haven’t followed through, I’ve lived to taste regret. On the occasion when I’ve picked up the thread and taken decisive steps to see it to fruition, I’ve become better for it.

So today, I’m picking up that thread.

What am I reading? 

A lot. I’m a bit promiscuous when reading and rarely read one at a time. The two that jump out at me are ‘Big Magic’ and ‘Kushiel’s Dart’. I love the latter, the first is somewhat interesting (especially in regards to ideas and their travels but more on that in a different post).

What am I writing?

Ah, but wouldn’t you like to know? I’ve got a story that’s been burning to be written for years. My new mood demands I continue it. In another name, there are some things that I’ve had on the backburner, we’ll see if I get to them.

And what of any art?

I want, badly, to play with clay. I have designs and shapes that bump around in my head and they want to be made tangible only in clay. As that is not an option (I don’t have the space for a kiln, much less the resources to make/buy one), I’m going to try something with fiber.

For an equally long time (this block has been within me for… Longer than I care to admit), I’ve wanted to try a certain technique with crochet. Today feels like it’ll be that day.

Additionally, I have some pieces to finish up and publish in the subscription pack. I’m attempting to work through my stash which is not so great for this but works just fine for the crochet art.

Today’s dream was and is just what I needed: a resounding kick in the asset. I’ve come to the realization that things need to change and I must put aside my fear to do so. Additionally, I’ve been reminded of my mantra: ‘Following whichever path I like… Beaten or not.’

So up for the rest of the year:

  1. Finish and publish my own book in my own name
  2. Create some art that utilizes my love of working with fiber
  3. Put fear to the side and rejoin the world of the living

 

Free Pattern Roundup

To kick off the new year, how about a free pattern roundup? Per usual, click the pics to go to the patterns!

When I was a little girl, I loved a little flip doll that I had. They seem to have gone from the toy shelves but now you can make one for the little girl in your life. Bonus: It’s Anna and Elsa!

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Everyone wants to be a mermaid, including dollies! Here’s a crochet mermaid tail for them!

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I love a good fingerless mitt. These caught my eye with their pretty cream background and standout colors.

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Fairy tales have always held me in their thrall. So this hood is at the top of my consideration list for Halloween this year. I love the stitchwork, it kind of looks like knit!

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Who doesn’t need a menagerie in their household? I can’t think of anyone. Crochet up your own today, starting with this adorable Rainbow Lorikeet.

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I’m a big fan of keeping as warm as possible in the winter. These finger crocheted scarves fit the bill of warmth while still remaining a cute accessory to an outfit!

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Repeat Crafter Me is among my favorite crochet designers. You may be all Christmased out but this is a great one if you still have gifts to make or you’re looking for a last minute gift for Little Christmas (the Epiphany). Click here to see the fox and reindeer edging crochet pattern. 

That’s it for today’s roundup (EDIT: No, it’s not, I’ve added more! Scroll down…). But in 2016, I’m working on blogging more frequently. Soon, ye shall be inundated with new and exciting (and seasonal!) pattern roundups!

I also have a bunch of new crochet projects that I’ve been working on and will be sharing those as soon as I can get outside and take some pics without freezing my tookis off!

As always, I’m working on new patterns. Keep an eye on my Craftsy and Etsy shops for the new releases! I have a new line I’m working on that I hope to get rolled out in a couple weeks. It’s some of the old, mixed with some new. I think you guys will dig it!

Remember, today is the last day to get all my patterns on super sale. Check my Etsy shop today and get over 120 patterns, graphs, and written graphs for $1.50. Click the pic to see the sale in my Etsy shop!

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EDIT: Well, I looked over my post and realized I only had a handful of freebies in the roundup. So how about a few more?

Get a free pattern with the code 44in2016 until January 7th. Use the code BIRTHDAY for 50% off an additional pattern. I picked this knitting one as I’m trying to learn to knit but there are many more from which to choose!

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Drops Designs makes such elegant patterns. Keep your feet cozy with these lovely slippers!

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I may have a bit of the attitude when watching the Super Bowl (next year, Cowboys!) but I’ll still be watching it. If you, like me, think of the Super Bowl as a national holiday, you’ll want to crochet up some of these!

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This little dress is adorable. It’s photos from one designer with an explanation for the pics from the person who uploaded it.

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How about some yoga socks for sitting by the fire (or… at least under a light blanket if your weather has been as crazy as Texas’ has been this season)?

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And finally, a bag. This bag is so pretty, you’re sure so get compliments on it all day. This is definitely going on my to-crochet list.

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Pattern Freebies This Weekend

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I’m adding some new freebies to the shop this weekend. They won’t all remain free so get them while the getting is good!

My kids and I are deep in a Harry Potter marathon so the first patterns I’m adding are all related to that!

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Click to get the Harry Potter written crochet graph!

 

 

 

Be sure to check out the other freebies that I’ve added since I last posted like Star Wars, Piglet, Winnie the Pooh, and a larger version of the Elvis written graph and more!

Lastly, the end of my pattern sale had to come at some point. I’ve extended it a few times but on Monday, January 4th I’m ending it.

So check out the sale while you’ve got the chance. It’s over 115 of my paid patterns for only $1.50.

Merry Christmas, Happy New Year, and Happy Holidays!

$5 For Over 105 Patterns

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Life is a funny beast, is she not? I’ve got a lot going on in mine right now and as such I’ve decided a distraction is in order.

What type of distraction, exactly? Why, a sale, of course!

I tried math, I thought of percentages, and then I threw that all out of the window and decided to just pick a number. I like the number five.

So today and tomorrow you can get all of my paid patterns that are currently listed in my Craftsy shop for only $5.

Yes. You get over 110 patterns that are currently listed in my shop for five dollars, total.

You want to be down? Cool. Click the pic below to buy them!

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Mixed: Not Black, Not White

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Today I saw something par for the course. Taye Diggs apparently came out and said that he wants his son to identify as mixed as opposed to black and outrage followed.

Here’s the thing: For all of the people who hold an opinion on the matter, the most vocal seem to be people who belong to one single race or another. Mixed people have been relatively silent in the wake. Why?

Because we know what’s real.

It doesn’t matter what we try to label ourselves or how we want to be viewed. The rest of the world has decided that they will decide for us and that’s that.

When we do something great, we belong to the race that is pleased with us (Halle Berry, Mariah Carey, President Obama).

When we do something not so hot, that must be our other side coming out (Halle Berry, Mariah Carey, President Obama).

Let me tell you what’s real.

I have curly hair and light skin. My young years were spent in progressive areas surrounded by people who had more class than to talk about the race of a child, at least in her hearing or in public forums. I didn’t grow up knowing what race was. I’m sure there were many times that I faced racism from which my parents kept me sheltered. But with the exception of a handful of incidents as a child that I won’t get into now, I didn’t really have a rough go of it.

One day my (black) dad brought some (solely white) friends and I to the store. We were running amok and generally acting like little brats. My dad gathered us all up and crouched down with a huge smile on his face.

“All of these white people are looking at me right now so I’m smiling at you but if you don’t act right, I’m going to tear up your behind when we get out to the car.” His eyes held certain death while his demeanor remained cheery.

To this day, that bright smile that was so incongruous with the terse, whispered threat remains the scariest moment of my life. It’s also one of the few times that my parents openly acknowledged race around me as a kid.

However, it wasn’t that my parents somehow screwed me up by telling me I could be whomever and whatever I wanted to be without the caveat of race, as so many people of a single race like to claim. No, what led me down the path of self-doubt was everyone else.

I remember the time I hid under my bed all day because on the news they said the KKK was up to something and one of their interviews included a man who ranted about ‘abominations’ as spittle leaked down his face. It took me a bit but by the end of it, I realized that I was one of the hell spawn to which he was referring.

When I was a trainer in high school I was patching up one of the guys when I heard someone say something racist. I’d lived in the South for a few years by that point and didn’t even bother looking up, just chalked it up to some more people with whom I wouldn’t be interacting after graduation. What caught my attention was when someone whispered, ‘She’s black.’ and the conversation came to a screeching halt. My hands shook as I continued about my business, but I couldn’t bring myself to look up and see the faces of those who I’d counted as friends prior to that moment.

One date seemed more infatuated with my blackness than me as a person, remarking over and over that he’d never dated ‘a black girl’. It stunned him into slack jawed silence when I finally told him that I’d never dated a white dude and he was the reason why.

Another guy I dated told me just before meeting his mother that while she might have a problem with me, it wasn’t personal. When I asked why (automatically assuming I’d worn the wrong clothing) he told me that his first crush had been white and after she’d very vocally told him what she thought about that he’d never so much as crushed on another white girl, much less dated one. That time it was I who was stunned into silence.

My ex-sister-in-law caught my wrath when she made racist remarks about white people while holding my toddler son and yet no one, including his father, could understand why I was upset.

I am consistenly told that my opinion doesn’t count when I disagree about race issues on both sides, be it something as small as how to care for hair or whether or not our President is indeed mixed and not solely black.

The list goes on and on but what remained true no matter which racial group was doing the talking is this: They all knew exactly what I was and what they had decided was what mattered, never mind that I had my own thoughts on the matter and that at the end of the day I. Was. Mixed.

So to me, and probably to a vast majority of mixed people (though, unlike many, I don’t claim to tell others what they think of themselves) it isn’t that our mixed heritage screws us up. We aren’t confused about who we are because our parents come from two different races. No. It’s you.

You screw us up, confuse us, consider us outliers. You tell us we’re one race when we please you, another when we fail. You tell us how you want us to act, to which group we should show alliance, how to talk, walk, listen to music, eat, live.

On one point you’re all right, though: It doesn’t matter what his father tells him or how his mother raises him, because as he grows, every day he will be told by others what he is and what that means to them.

He isn’t yet old enough to drive, think about college, vote, or marry and yet you are already arguing about who he is as a person. His father tries to say that he has two parents and both will have input on his life but you think that your opinion somehow holds bearing.

I, for one, applaud Taye Diggs for recognizing that while it is true that the world is filled with a bunch of you his son needn’t be concerned with your caveman logic while learning his ABCs. Here’s hoping that he’ll be one of the few to make it to adulthood with this thought intact:

Screw you. I’m mixed.

 

 

Happy Thanksgiving Turkey Style Plus Two Books on Sale!

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Here’s the second in the Thanksgiving series (and likely last for today): a thanksgiving turkey with the words “Happy Thanksgiving” across the bottom.

I’m starting the series off with a sale so get them while they’re still 50 cents!

Click the pic to download the Thanksgiving turkey graph from my Craftsy shop for 50 cents!

Everything in my shop is on sale as well! Including the pattern books that are normally $10 but are 95 cents for the duration of the sale!

Click the pic to download the Ten Written Graph Patterns book for only 95 cents while the sale lasts! (Normally $10)

Click the pic to download the pattern book with 25 Halloween themed graph patterns for only 95 cents while the sale lasts! (No written graphs included.)

Have a fabulous rest of the day, guys! I’ll be back tomorrow, posting more freebies and sales!