Bullet Journal, giveaway, journaling, Uncategorized

My New BulletJournal and Giveaway

Good day!

Gratitude Journal


As I have noted in the past I need my Inner Guide Planner and a Ta-Da List/Gratitude journal every work day to keep everything straight with my big family and keep my home and myself from falling into chaos. Or, what the Fly lady calls it, Can’t Have Anybody Over Syndrome (CHAOS).

I’ve sort of been playing with the Bullet Journal lay out in my Gratitude Journal but it was a real mess. I had used it for all kinds of things and let my kids draw in it to keep them good when out and about and I was ready to commit.

New Bullet Journal

What is a Bullet Journal you ask? It is any notebook that is set up in a certain layout. The first page has your name and contact information so that if it gets lost then it can be returned to you. Then comes the index page where you will be able to write where you can find things in your journal.

Index Page

Then there is the Key page where you show how you will be using the bullets in your journal.

Key Page

Then you have the Full year or full month page. I went with month so that you have an overview of what the month will look like. Then your personal and if you have professional goals for the month on the page opposite the monthly overview.

Month Page

And after that you start your journal.

Daily Page

I use erasable pens and erasable markers in my journal because I like things neat and tend to make typos or not like the way something looks so I like to be able to erase and redo things. If you are starting out and don’t want to put that much money into it then you can use a pencil or your favorite pen. When starting out be frugal and use what you have so that you know you like the process of Bullet Journaling. Most people have a spare notebook laying around. If you like it then you can start getting fancy with it and get all the bells and whistles.

After looking at all the cool pics on Instagram of bullet journals and how you can adjust it to your own needs I was hooked. I had to get my own. I will be developing my own Bullet Journal style over the next few months and will be updating you on the way. I want to introduce you to the Bullet Journal now and what the basics are and then give some idea of how it can be modified to your needs. Most of the people I follow on Instagram are students that do not have a house to run or kids to take care of. So far I haven’t found a nice Bullet Journaler  that does have kids and ALL the stuff that comes with that. This helps me stay focused on my goals and keep me mindful of how much I do everyday.

I also add that day’s weather forecast so that I know what to expect.

My 3 oldest boys went to their grandparents for spring break and it shows in my activity level logged on FitBit that I have not been running all over town and constantly keeping a 3 year old from putting himself and others in harms way. To keep me mindful of keeping up with my steps I just add a bullet in my journal reminding me to meet my 6K steps that day and as I check in with my journal through the day to see what is left to do I can be reminded to stay on top of my steps.

I will be adding pages to help me with tracking my weigh loss and the prizes I will reward myself with when hitting my milestones and tracking how we are doing in paying down our debt. These will all be in future posts. I will have monthly budget pages which will be directly following my mostly goals and also lists of books I plan on reading. Blog posts I plan on writing and so on and so forth. You guys get my gist.

Now to the fun part. I bought myself a Moleskin bullet journal in a wonderful Teal color. I am going to do a giveaway to a lucky reader of a Bullet Journal of their own. A Moleskine Notebook that I will send you directly from Amazon to your house. This is open to the whole world. You will be able to enter to win your journal from today March 16 2016 until March 31st of 2016 11:59pm I will announce the winner on April 1st.

Just use this Entry-Form to enter the giveaway.


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And the Winners are……………

Helen W and Angela J!!! 
Congratulations ladies!!! 
I have contacted you individually via email and am waiting for address information to be able to send you your prizes.

I have been spinning with the Malabrigo NUBE roving myself and I have to say I really enjoy the color that is coming from it and spinning with it. Drafting it in the places that are colored pretty dark is a bit difficult but I’m new to spinning and that might be normal. I like to draft the roving well before sitting down at the wheel. I have not finished the 4oz roving to actually ply it to make a yarn so that I will leave for another post with pretty photos but I have finished more than half of it and on the wheel it goes pretty quickly. Spinning almost 2 oz in an evening. I think pre drafting it is what takes up most of my time. 

I am so sorry for the delay. I meant to announce the winners last week. I meant to blog about all kinds of things last week but grief has got the better of me. My days roll by one after the other and so fast. I’m sort of lost through the day. Also with that said I have been busy. My oldest is starting kindergarten tomorrow and I had a job interview yesterday. So with getting school uniforms and having to make some purchases for myself to be updated for the interview I have been a little busy.

What have you been up to? Please distract me with your comments.

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Malabrigo Fiber Giveaway.

Before my mother’s death I was sent this great fiber from Malabrigo called Nube, which means cloud in Spanish, to do a review and giveaway on my blog. I will be giving two of my readers one each and I will be doing the review of what it is like to spin with Nube when I announce the winner. What I can say about this fiber is that it is wonderfully soft and the colors are amazingly vibrant. The color combinations are beautiful and I can’t wait to spin it and then knit with it.

Deciding on which two to giveaway was difficult for me. Looking at the photo, can you blame me?
I chose to give away The Lavanda and the Zarzamora. The 2 to the right of the photo.
Nube is 4oz or 113gr of 100% Merino wool and is as soft as a dream. 
If you have never spun yarn then you can get inexpensive Drop Spindles and the book Start Spinning is a great reference. Why not try your hand if you win free roving? 
To win one follow the rules listed below.
ANKESTRICK, giveaway, http://schemas.google.com/blogger/2008/kind#post, knitting

New Favorite Designer ANKESTRICK and Giveaway!

ANKESTRICK which goes by the  username fallmasche is my new favorite designer on Ravelry. I stumbled upon her while I was surfing patterns on Ravelry and had to stop by and tell her how much I enjoy her creations. Here are some of my favorites….

Mrs. Garter





Her designs are elegant but wearable. I love her natural colors and flattering designs. 

Anke was nice enough to answer some of my questions.

Who is Fallmasche?
Hello, my name is  Anke. I wanted to knit something after several years of not knitting and was looking for a shawl pattern on the internet. There was a nice one: “clapotis” on ravelry. Because clapotis was made out of dropped sts “Fallmaschen” in german, I took this name as my username. I was hooked on this pattern and made 5 or 6 of them.

How did you learn how to knit?
I learned it from the women in my family and in school. I always like to craft and from time to time knitting was my favorite for some months, maybe years.

When did you decide to start designing and why?
During my knitting times, I always made my own designs, but I hate sewing and could not get the shape I wanted when sewing. When I learned the top-down seamless knitting from all the talented ravelry designers I knew immediately, that I would be able to make the garments I like to wear. I love to see how it grows and being able to test the fit at every stage of the process. (especially the neckline, my favorite part of a garment)

What is your favorite pattern and why?
My own or in general? My own favorite is always the next one I have in my mind. My first and all-time favorite on ravelry (after clapotis 🙂 is Snowbird by Heidi Kirrmaier and than  Holl by Kirsten Johnstone. Some day I’ll knit them …

Who is your favorite designer and why?
I love the cool plain style of Kirsten Johnstone (assemblage)  design.
I could feel the joy playing around with knitting possibilities itself in the pieces of Heidi Kirrmaier and I love how she modeled them.
I admire the output and nonchalant style of Isabell (lilalu)
I admire too the simple but still charming pieces from Veera Välimäki.
And I like to put Nicole (chirimoya) on the list. Even if she didn’t publish here own designs, she always interprets a pattern with her own sophisticated style.

Where do you find inspiration?
Sometimes from the enthusiasm of trying to tape the full potential of seamless knitting itself. Sometimes from designs I saw on the street or in shops.  Sometimes it is just enough to touch a nice yarn and the garment appears on my inner eye.

What are your favorite colors and fiber to work with?
My favorite thing is to knit with two threads of different yarns and colors to make the garment more lively maybe a little mysterious. I prefer to use natural based fibers.

You designing something at the moment and when do you believe it will be ready for the public?
I am planing to release my “Birdsong” ebook with several patterns. They all will use my new favorite neckline in different shapes. Very easy to knit and made for the warmer period of the year. I finished two (Tschilp and Zalp) of maybe 4 patterns, so it will take a little time until I will be able to publish it.
I have to say I am pretty excited to see what these new designs will look like! 

Anke has been so generous to offer one of my readers a pick of her patterns. You get to go look at all her patterns and decide which one you would like. My personal favorite is the Walnuss since it is so versatile and usable. 

This giveaway will be open til Monday, May 20th 2013. 
chevron, cowl., giveaway, http://schemas.google.com/blogger/2008/kind#post, interview, Krista, rain city knits, Yarn

New Sponsor- Rain City Knits

I am so happy to introduce you to Rain City Knits Yarn. Krista, the owner, was nice enough to answer some of my questions.

This is Krista. Isn’t she beautiful?

Tell me a little about RainyCityKnits and how it got started.

RCK is a very small hand-dyed yarn company based in the heart of Vancouver , in a vibrant neighborhood called Gastown. RainCityKnits was born out of a love of bright colours – an antidote to the the endless grey season on the West Coast.

Prior to launching RainCityKnits, I worked internationally on issues of sustainability and social justice. My passion and commitment to these issues help guide my business decisions. For example, I only use food-grade dyes to colour my fibres in an effort to minimize my impact on the environment. I also source my Uruguayan Merino Wool from a worker’s collective, where workers are paid a fair price for their yarn.

How and where do you get your inspiration?

As mentioned, I really adore bright colours in juxtaposition to the cool colours that characterize Vancouver’s landscape.

I’m really inspired by current trends in colour and I think that my time living in London, UK has a lot to do with this. Londoners, on average, are very fashion-forward and know how to combine colours without appearing garish, which is a possible risk when working with a super bright palette.

Locally, Gastown is a real hub of creativity with fashion boutiques, furniture shops and lifestyle stores lining the streets and that too inspires me.

Who are your favorite designers and why?

I’m guessing this question refers to knitting designers. I opt for clean lines in designs and am really attracted to Nordic and Japanese designs.
A few of my favorite designers are Julie Hoover (USA), Ririko (Japan), Jane Richmond (Canada), Rena Varsakis of The Red Fox and Gown (Canada) and Isabell Kraemer (Germany).

What does a normal day in your life look like?

Cliche as it sounds, every day is different. That’s one of the things I really love about running RainCityKnits. On a given day, I will be dyeing yarn (of course), skeining, packing orders, writing for my blog, Tweeting and taking photos of things that inspire me.

My husband and I are also raising a BC Guide Dog (for the Blind). She’s 8 months old. A part of my day is dedicated to her training too.

What is your favorite knit item at the moment?

Relax by Ririko. I’ve never knit myself a sweater – though I’ve made several for others – and I’m really looking forward to the end result.

If you could have dinner with anybody dead or alive, who would it be and why?

A bit of a heavy choice, but I’d love to sit down with Malala Yousafzai, the young girl who was shot in the head by the Taliban. I’d love to hear how she finds the courage to continue lobbying for the rights of girls in the face of such an oppressive and frightening regime. She is truly an amazing young woman.

What is your dream in the future for RainyCityKnits?

My dream for RainCityKnits is to continue to be able to make a living while making things I love. It’s a simple dream but one that can be a real challenge to achieve. Hopefully RCK will continue to grow and bring happiness to those who encounter our products.

I have to say, with this as the view from our studio, I have a pretty great reminder of the importance of treading lightly.

Thank you Krista for answering all of those questions and what a view! I´m super jealous. I miss the mountains and the ocean!

I was lucky enough to get to play with 2 skeins of her DK weight in natural and Fried Egg color and this is what I came up with. 

This is preblocking.

Working with this yarn was divine! I REALLY loved the yellow fried egg color. It really does look like a fried egg from a nice organic chicken and I wish the camera could catch the color so that you could she the high and low lights in it. The yarn is soft and fluffy and very nice up against the skin. I would love to make a whole chevron blanket out of it to cover my bed.

 Alright beauties, Krista has so generously offered a skein of her amazing DK yarn in a color of your choice (I know it will be hard to choose).  I will also be offering 3 of you my design for free. It comes in 3 different sizes, the one in the photo being the largest.

Here is a sample of the awesome colors she has!

To enter leave your email address and a name in the box below and then start going through the many different ways you can enter to win. You can do just one or them all! It is up to you! Now off you go to enter the giveaway! Good luck!

If you want to head over to Rain City Knits and make a purchase then Krista is offering a 10% discount to everyone if you enter OLOF10 at checkout. 

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New Sponsor- Wooly Wonka Fibers and Giveaway.

I am so happy to introduce you a new sponsor, Wooly Wonka Fibers owned by Anne Podlesak. Look at some of her amazing colors and products.

Anne was nice enough to answer some of my questions about her and her store.

What is Wooly Wonka Fibers?   

My online indie store.  I carry several different weights of yarn bases from laceweight up through worsted/Aran weight.   I also carry hand-dyed and limited-edition blended rovings for handspinners, as well as yarn packs for various projects. I’ve also got a designer store for my knitting patterns under the Wooly Wonka label available as downloads from Ravelry here.

Who is the mastermind behind the colorways?   

Me and myself!

What are some of your other hobbies? 

I don’t really have a lot that I do outside of fiber-y things, although I read quite a bit and listen to a lot of music.  I used to horseback ride competitively, but after my last older horse passed away last year, I decided I didn’t want to learn to bounce again to train a new one.  🙂

A day in the life of Anne, What would it look like?   

I’m an early bird.  I’m usually up by 5:15.  I have a day job, but I telecommute for it, so I work usually 5:30 to 1:30 at my computer.  I’ll then hit the treadmill for an hour’s run.  After that and a shower, I head to the dye room for several hours most days to dye and skein yarn.  After dinner, I usually sit and knit until I start falling asleep.

If you had your dream job, what would it be?  

My dyeing and knitwear design would be it!

What can we look forward to seeing from Wooly Wonka Fibers in the near future? You jumping on the bright color bandwagon?

 In terms of dye colors, I do carry a few eye-searing brights (the apple green Thornapple and the hot pink Flamingo), but I tend to like blended/grayed/muted colors, so that’s still likely to be the main focus in my dye colors.  I will be offering 2-packs of sock yarns later this spring with one handpainted and one semisolid colorway that coordinate for striped shawl projects, for example, and I’m working on a line of transitional colors that are 4 smaller skeins that blend from one color to another for socks or other smaller projects.  I’ve got a ton of design projects in the works.  I have two patterns coming out in Cooperative Press books sometime this year.  I’m working (feverishly) on three projects for an Interweave special publication that’ll be out this summer, as well as two projects for the Spin-Off magazines this year. In addition, I’m launching a big 3-part design collection that I’ll start photo shoots for in June, with tentative releases in early fall 2013, mid-winter 2014 and late spring 2014.

I was lucky enough to get a skein of Anne’s yarn to play with and OH MY is it dreamy. It is so soft and the color is just so well balanced.  An Aerten Sock yarn with 80% Superwash merino wool, 10% Cashmere, and 10 nylon it is 435 yards in a 100gr skein. Would also love to knit myself a shawl or sweater out of this stuff. You can´t tell while it is in the skein and I couldn’t get a good enough photo of it but the color in this skein of sock yarn dyed in Pewter really reminds me of a nice foggy morning where you know the air is crisp and mittens are needed. There is just such a nice depth to it. It also doesn’t split too easily so the stitches come out nice and even.

The mittens are knit from the fingers up to make sure they are a perfect fit for you. Starting with the thumb and then putting the thumb on scrap yarn while you knit the finger part and then bring the 2 together. I used the magic loop method so that You can try your mitten on as you go so that you know how much longer or shorter you want the cuff or the fingers. If you are use to toe up socks this is just the next step in doing that but to make mittens. Hoping that you will learn this simple method to make mittens for the whole family. In the pattern I am including a fingerless version. Both great to make as gifts and you can get a kick start on holiday knitting early.

This yarn gets 5 stars from me. With it having a nice twist, very workable, beautiful high and low lights and just all around a joy to the fingers.

Even after the mittens I still have plenty left for some mittens for my boys

Anne is also offering one of my readers a skein of her Yarn of the Month which is this sock yarn just like the one I use in my pattern, but in any color you would like from her dye lot, for free! The winner also gets the pattern for my mittens so do 2 other readers that enter and follow the rules.

If mittens are not for you, or you really want to make one of Anne’s sock patterns, Anne has been nice enough to give my readers a discount code for the Fall in Vermont patterns of 10% off and it is 10FIVT. That will include the 2-Horse Hitch Socks that were designed using that sock yarn and will be included in the giveaway this March, any pattern in that collection, or the entire ebook. 

1st place gets Mitten Pattern and the yarn to make it
2nd and 3rd place get the Mitten pattern and can also get the yarn to make it using the 10% discount code. 

Here are the rules. Please follow them or you will not qualify for the giveaway.

You can enter up to 5 times just read how and post a comment for each entry. Don´t forget to leave a way to contact you in the post.
1. Follow my blog and leave in the comment thread how you are following my blog
2. Follow me on twitter. and if you already follow me on twitter then retweet the giveaway
3. Like my Facebook page if you already like my page then share the post about this giveaway
4. Tell me which color you would like of the yarn and which one of Anne´s patterns are your favorite.
5. Tell me what you would name my mittens.

Sign up will be open til Sunday the 10th of March 2013 noon and then I will use Random.org to randomly pick a winner.

Baby, book, Cooperative press, giveaway, http://schemas.google.com/blogger/2008/kind#post, kid, knitting, Tiny Treads

Tiny Treads-Review and Giveaway

Those that know me know I have three boys under the age of five. I’ve always wanted to knit socks for my older boys but had a hard time finding patterns that were sized so that I knew that they would fit with out me having to fit them on them all the time and have been too busy to design my own. The Cooperative Press has been nice enough to share with me a PDF copy of a new sock knitting book for children that just came out, Tiny Treads by Joeli Caparco. If you have kids and like knitting socks or you want to start knitting socks but not ready for adult size socks this is the book for you. They work up quickly and are great as holiday and birthday gifts. As soon as I got it I cast on for the Pied Piper using sock yarn I had bought for the purpose of knitting for my kids years ago. The instructions are easy to follow.

What I love about the book is that there is sizing in both English/American sizes and European sizes as well making it very easy to find the right size to make when gifting socks and the size range from newborn to big kid sizes. She does both toe up and top down knitting. The patterns work for both boys and girls and the photos show off the sock very well.

The only things I would have changed is that I’m not a fan of the font of the titles, which doesn’t get in the way of making the socks but for some reason the font just bothers me, and there are no pages in the book that show finishing techniques or how to cast on toe up socks with photos. Other than that the book is great and I love supporting crafty mothers.

The Cooperative Press is being kind enough to give an electronic copy of this book to one lucky reader.
You can enter up to 4 times just read how and post a comment for each entry. Don´t forget to leave a way to contact you in the post.
1. Follow my blog and leave in the comment thread how you are following my blog
2. Follow me on twitter. and if you already follow me on twitter then tweet about the giveaway
3. Like my Facebook page if you already like my page then share the post about this giveaway
4. Tell me which one of the patterns is your favorite and you would like to make.

Sign up will be open til Friday the 1st of Feb 2013 noon and then I will use Random.org to randomly pick a winner.

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Boys’ Knits Review and Giveaway


Today I´m sharing with you the book Boys’ Knits by Katya Frankel. As most of you know I only know how to make cute little boys. Girls don´t seem to be in the cards for this family. As much as this has been hard on me in the past I have come to terms with the fact that I have boys that are amazing and cute! It is harder to find knits for boys that are masculine but fun. Boys’ Knits is one of very few pattern books that I actually want to knit most of the patters and my picky, almost 5 year old, actually wants me to make for him. I LOVE the vest on the front of the book and the green zipper sweater. Katya also does a great job in the beginning of the book of showing finishing techniques and how to modify the sweaters to fit that skinny, long kid (this is my problem) or if your kid just has a long body. I have to admit that some of the patters I would never make but they are just a matter of taste and over all I would make most of them. I only showed photos of the patters that I will make for my boys.  Katya uses popular yarns so it is easy to replicate the model exactly if that is what you want or you can use your own yarns and just make sure the gauge is right. As you know I´m on a yarn diet. No purchasing yarn until I knit down my stash. But I do believe that I have enough yarn for a few of these. As soon as I finish my Snowbird Cardigan which I only have 6cm left to finish the bottom then I will cast on the vest Epsilon on the front of the book.

The Cooperative Press is being kind enough to give an electronic copy of this book to one lucky reader.
You can enter up to 4 times just read how and post a comment for each entry. Don´t forget to leave a way to contact you in the post.
1. Follow my blog and leave in the comment thread how you are following my blog
2. Follow me on twitter. and if you already follow me on twitter then tweet about the giveaway
3. Like my Facebook page if you already like my page then share the post about this giveaway
4. Tell me which one of the patterns is your favorite and you would like to make.

Sign up will be open til Monday the 21st of Jan 2013 noon and then I will use Random.org to randomly pick a winner.

giveaway, Little Lippy Ewe, project bags, Review

Little Lippy Ewe Review and Giveaway.

Another treat? Yes, yes I do have another treat for you.

Lindsay from the Little Lippy Ewe has sent me this amazing project bag and is sponsoring this amazing giveaway for you. These bags are perfect for smaller projects and to keep the yarn in while you knit to keep the yarn clean. It has great structure so it stands up straight while you knit. There is a bead that slips up and down to open or close the bag. It´s not closed tight so don´t keep small things like stitch holder or weaving in needles in there if you think it will topple over but for knitting socks, mittens or scarves or baby projects, this is the perfect little companion bag to take along with you to knit anywhere and keep your yarn clean. I can totally see myself using it in the future for when I go to the Dr and have to wait or when my kids start doing sports then it can sit beside me and I can just keep knitting.

Here are some of my favorite prints that she sells in her shop.

One lucky winner will get a bag of choice from the Little Lippy Ewe. If you purchase a bag from here between now and the end of the giveaway and you end up winning then she will refund your purchase and let you keep the bag.

Here are the rules for entry. You can enter up to 5 times.

  1. You can go to the Little Lippy Ewe website and tell me which bag you would like to win.
  2. You can follow my blog and in the comment tell me how you are following.
  3. You can follow me on Twitter
  4. You can like me on Facebook
  5. You can like Little Lippy Ewe on Facebook

Each time you have to come back and leave a comment on this blog with each entry and add a way to contact you with EACH entry. 

Good luck to all. I will be closing entries at 8pm on Sunday August 4th 2012 and using Random.org to pick the winners.