Friday, January 31, 2014

Crochet Mug Coaster Cozy

So I have to admit...I really dragged my feet at making mug cozies. I didn't see the point of them. Yeah...I know. But I wanted to make some small items while I was recovering so I found a pattern and made a few (nine to be exact) and they turned out really cute:

It's a cozy AND a coaster. No more hot spots on your table (or desk) and no more burnt fingertips! Brilliant.

Believe it or not but I didn't make one for myself. I listed all of the above it my etsy shop

Visit my shop and buy one! Or if you are a happy hooker you can find the pattern info on the listing (I.E. Where it comes from and where you can find it).


Linking up with: Pin Me Linky Party, Made by Me,

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Coffee Cup Sleeves


Friday was my last day off of work (after having nearly 2 weeks off from my ACL recontruction surgery. 

During my time off I spent about half that time sleeping (I can thank the pain pills for that) and the other half watching TV and crocheting. And I've mustered up nine coffee cup sleeves: 

I love them all. I want to keep them all! can't. I listed them all for sell in my etsy shop.
Check them out and buy one (or two) if you like 😉.


Wednesday, January 29, 2014

ACL Reconstruction Surgery: Update

As of Tuesday it has been TWO weeks since my ACL reconstruction surgery {see my post here for tips and info about the surgery} - and this time has gone by REALLY fast.

I have to tell you that I am feeling quite SMUG with myself. 
One thing you should know about me is I am a BIG baby when it comes to pain - I mean paper cuts kill me. I anticipated being on my death bed after surgery -- and to my surprise and delight ... I wasn't!
Now, don't get me wrong - it's not a walk in the park ... I mean literally ...  nobody wants to walk in the park with crutches and your leg locked into a straight position but I would say that my pain probably never climbed past a 5 on the scale of 1-10 (ten being: kill me now).  I did have two instances where I thought I could go on with out the pain pills during the first week - I was wrong.
Lesson: Don't let your pain get out of control. Just go ahead an manage properly by taking your pills as least for the first few days.
Here is my recommendation for you Post-Op:
It has made a big impact on my recovery. My Doctor and the Physical Therapist were quite pleased with the flexibility I have already gained back in my leg.

I attribute that to doing the sets of bending and stretching they outline for you post op.  The PT said that he has dealt with people who have had ACL surgery and 2 weeks later can still NOT extend their leg fully. 
I'm not having that. My goal is to get rid of my damn crutches by the end of this week aka I'm determined to get rid of my lame limp!

To hear two professionals be impressed (Dr. Miller said that I was a "Rock Star"... I mean we all already knew that but it's still really good to hear) and the physical therapist tell me how happy he is makes me stand up straighter .... especially since I know my tolerance for pain is zero.
Two weeks out - I'd say my pain is at a 1-2 level on the scale. Having my leg down all day is bothersome (so I have a bin to prop it up on while I'm at work) and wearing the thigh to ankle brace is annoying too -- especially at bed time but I'm getting thru and I'm hoping to be in good walking shape for my buddy Jenn's wedding!
I keep debating if I should share my post-op pictures with you guys - would you want to see it?
It's not gruesome. My knee is more swollen, ugly and ashy then anything else but my incisions are teeny tiny (thanks to an awesome surgeon). I'm going to post them below. If you think you can't handle seeing it just skip to the bottom and leave me a comment!

My life for the next 6+ weeks:

Physical therapy 2x a week and at home exercises: 


{Audio}Book Review: The Invention of Wings

Here's what it's all about (per audible)

Hetty "Handful” Grimke, an urban slave in early nineteenth century Charleston, yearns for life beyond the suffocating walls that enclose her within the wealthy Grimke household. The Grimke’s daughter, Sarah, has known from an early age she is meant to do something large in the world, but she is hemmed in by the limits imposed on women.

Kidd’s sweeping novel is set in motion on Sarah’s eleventh birthday, when she is given ownership of ten year old Handful, who is to be her handmaid.We follow their remarkable journeys over the next thirty-five years, as both strive for a life of their own, dramatically shaping each other’s destinies and forming a complex relationship marked by guilt, defiance, estrangement and the uneasy ways of love.
As the stories build to a riveting climax, Handful will endure loss and sorrow, finding courage and a sense of self in the process. Sarah will experience crushed hopes, betrayal, unrequited love, and ostracism before leaving Charleston to find her place alongside her fearless younger sister, Angelina, as one of the early pioneers in the abolition and women’s rights movements.

Click HERE to see a tease from the book.
I was pulled in right away. As soon as I hit "play" I was in the South right there watching Sarah and Handful live their lives. Sue Monk Kidd's writing is so vivid and descriptive. I felt I could see the house Sarah grew up in, the streets of Philadelphia, the Spirit Tree, where Handful and Charlotte did their sewing and so much more!

The story is broken in to parts - periods of time. It makes the story really move along effortlessly and it has a nice flow. Every other chapter alternates between the POV of Sarah and Handful (I LOVE that in any book).  Both characters have distinctively different lives and distinctly different voices and each chapter really allows you to see that.

I really liked the narration By Jenna Lamia, Adepero Oduye.  The stammers, the singing, the awkwardness, the sadness, all the moments truly made this story come to life for me.  I liked the two voices for this one audiobook and I think I'll look for more books that offer this type of performance.

Overall Thoughts:
I was hestitant to read this at first. I liked the other Sue Monk Kidd book The Secret Life of Bees but I didn't love it (I thought it was just aiiiight). This book on the other hand I really liked. I recommend this to you.  I have to admit I even liked the Author's note which I know I wouldn't have read if I had this book in paperback or kindle format, but being that it was an audiobook I listened. And what I heard (and enjoyed) was Sue Monk Kidd going over all the details of the book and letting the reader know what was fact and what she created. She took historical figures and brought them to life again in this book and in a way she saw them. LOVED that. And I love now knowing what is true and what she made up.

I listened to this book on my iphone. Love the convenience of that.

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Teaser Tuesday : The Invention of Wings

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly bookish meme, 
hosted by MizB of Should be Reading.

"I saw then what I hadn't seen before, that I was very good at despising slavery in the abstract, in the removed and anonymous masses, but in the concrete, intimate flesh of the girl beside me, I'd lost the ability to be repulsed by it. I'd grown comfortable with the particulars of evil. There's a frightful muteness that dwells at the center of all unspeakable things, and I had found my way into it."


Friday, January 24, 2014

Crochet Mood Blanket {days 13-24}

I just realized I haven't shared my crochet mood blanket with you in nearly two weeks. I keep debating how frequently I want to share my blanket on my blog (I share on Instagram at least one-two times a week) but I dunno. I just don't want it to get boring/repetitive and then you stop reading! 

A change I've made since my last post is I decided to add a star to mark the beginning of the month. I want a way to know the start of every month to make the blanket a little easier to follow. I think for February 1 I'll do a heart. Maybe each 1st of the month I'll have different appliqués. I have plenty of time to figure it out (but I an open to suggestions!)

Blocks 13-18 was my surgery week:

Monday: Pre-op stress! And my last day of work for 10 days.

Tuesday: Surgery day! All the texts, calls, messages, Facebook love and the roses and balloons from Troy. How could anyone not feel loved?!

Wednesday, Thursday, Friday: Tired. Hopped up on Percocet. 

Saturday: Down. First day of cabin fever!

Sunday: Peaceful/relaxed. Troy came home with pizza and sat in the couch w me and he watched football while I drifted in and out of sleep.

Blocks 20-24

Monday: Down. More cabin fever. 

Tuesday: Happy! First day I unlocked my brace (which means progress!) And after a week of my leg being straight most of the day unlocked brace means bent knee! I also stopped my pain pills to get me out the Percocet fog.

Wednesday: Happy! I found out I'm going to CABO! I won in my group at work (President's Club) and that means a 4 day trip to Cabo in March. Woot!

Thursday: Creative. Just expect a large amount if crochet post coming up soon. Thatsallimsayin! 

Friday: Ambitious. First day out the house since my surgery and I had a lot I wanted to do!!

So there's the update in my world - reflected in my blanket. What's going on in yours?


Monday, January 20, 2014

Baby Blanket : Granny Squares

I'm so excited to share my latest completed blanket. It's going to be a baby shower gift for my friend. I don't THINK she reads my blog (but if you do text me and I'll give this to you early).

She told me her colors are navy and green. Colors I wouldn't have put together but I really love this color combo now! 

She sent me this picture from Etsy of artwork she was thinking of getting for the baby's room: 

I think this blanket will go along with that nicely!


Wednesday, January 15, 2014

ACL Reconstruction Surgery

This is day #1 of my ACL reconstruction surgery recovery - so I'm a bit hopped up on Percocet and sleepiness so if this post gets a little goofy just keep that in mind!

I wanted to share my experience with you all because during pre-op I spent hours searching the web for information about ACL and I have to tell you the best information I found was this post by Holly: 

I really debated if I should go thru w the surgery. Last year was when I first discovered my ACL was torn. I just did physical therapy for it and went on my merry way. Then in November of 2013 I fell/slipped/knee gave out at the top of the stairs. I fell with a loud POPPING sound. Which I had come to find out that popping sound was my MCL tearing this time. Between the time I first found out my ACL was torn and the November stairs incident my knee had given out a few times and it was painful! It feels like your knee is bending completely backwards. I don't recommend it.  

But anyhow, this time around when I talked to the doctor (Dr. Miller at Shady Grove Orthopaedic Associates) he basically said my knee can continually give out because the knee is so unstable plus with my ACL torn my MCL is at risk to be damaged (hence me tearing it in November). 

So after me talking to the doctor, my mom, my dad, my stepmom, Troy (and per Troy's suggestion I got a second opinion from another doctor) and hours of googling I decided to book my appointment. 

Even with my appointment booked I still debated if I should go thru with it. I worried about missing work (seriously). I am in sales...commission sales...and I really don't want to (nor can I afford) to have my checks messed with. PLUS neither doctor told me how long I should take off work (1 week? 2?) they both said "it's up to you". Whatever that means. 

I decided to take off one week. Then HR said I could have up to two weeks off so guess what? I'm off for two weeks.  

Pre-op Recommendations:
1. Move furniture so you can get around on your crutches. Make a path from couch to bathroom to bed.
2. Stock up on waters in the areas you'll be recovering in (mine are by the bed and by the couch - you will be very thirsty! Plus they say drink plenty of fluids so just prep yourself now).
3. Have ice packs. Lots of them. Or packs of frozen peas. You have so much padding on you knee post-op but still be prepared.
4. Have friends/family available to bring you food. You won't feel like getting it yourself.
5. Have the remote close by
6. Have extra pillows to prop your knee up on.
7. Get you painpills and antibiotics BEFORE surgery. Like day before. 

Day of surgery:

My surgery went as planned. I was in at 10:30. Had my paperwork done by 11. Was talking to the doctor and anesthesiologist by 11:30. 

They ask you at least 5 times what leg surgery is on AND make you write on your leg with a sharpie which one you are having work on:

Then you put on the socks on the foot that is NOT being operated on

Then you get the nerve blocker which sounds scary but is fantastic. They inject you in 2-3 spots so you don't feel anything in your leg for 12-24 hours. Mine lasted about 18 hours. You have a numb foot for awhile which is weird. Like you foot is sleep.

Surgery was 2 hours. I went for the cadaver option. They do 3 incisions and do the surgery laparoscopically. I have pictures but decided against sharing those but the doctor gives you about 6 photos showing you the MCL/ACL and other.

Next thing you know you are waking up. Took me about 20-30 minutes to wake up and get dressed. Then they wheel you out to your car and go home. I recommend just getting in the backseat. Make it easy on yourself. 

When you get home - get in bed. Have some food, watch some TV. Take a pain pill and go to bed. Don't do anything more than that. Besides go to the bathroom - and if you're anything like me that's about 100 times. I have a little trashcan I put in front of the toilet to prop my leg on while I handle business.

I have to tell you I'm some thankful my mom was there. She talked to me to get my mind off things. Told me I should be in hospital giving her a grand baby.

I told her not to look so happy I was having surgery.

Then when I got home Troy had left me roses and balloons and cards. Love that. 

I recommend you doing this for your friend/partner if they are going thru this or any type of surgery. It made me feel SO good.

1. Take it easy. 
2. Get on the couch w the remote and relax.
3. Eat some food and take your meds. Don't let your pain get out of control. Trust me. I did and that was a big mistake. I'm still trying to get the pain under control.  
4. You'll have some exercises to do: ankle pumps and quad sets. I've only done the ankle pumps. I can't bring myself to do the quad sets yet. 

The pain meds (or maybe just the pain) made me feel nauseous. I had a couple scares today where I thought I was going to lose my cookies.

I'm in pain now. Maybe a 5. I spend most of my resting day at a level 2-3. It's only day 1. High hopes tomorrow will be better!

I hope my experience helps you if you ever go thru this! I'll keep you posted on my recovery/rehabilitation. I'm on the road to recovery!


Saturday, January 11, 2014

Crochet Mood Blanket 2014 {Blocks 6-12}

I realized two things this week - tired days are followed by a burst of creativity and second I can't count. On the picture I put these are blocks 5-10 but it's really 6-10. I'm too lazy to re-do the whole picture again and I figured nobody would notice unless I told them. Whoops.

I've decided to make this blanket 19 blocks by 19 blocks instead of 18x20. It's going to be massive! I can't wait!!


Thursday, January 9, 2014

Hooking Hats

I had a bunch of orders come in for this hat as soon as I posted this pic on Facebook: 

Super cute right? One friend asked me to make one after I "liked" someone else's on FB. That one friend's request has landed me SIX orders in just a day in a half! That's incredible to me.

I've been hooking away and have finished HALF of the requests.

Don't judge my hat model. I had to use what was in my house! 

Surgery date is looming around the corner so I'm in a quick rush to get my orders in before I'm down and out of commission. I hope to finish the other half before Monday.

Pattern via: The Yarn Chick. 

Monday, January 6, 2014

Crochet Mood Blanket {Blocks 1-5}

Happy Monday!
I hope you had a great weekend! 

Five days have passed into this new year and I have five blocks to prove it:

How about a Creative Mood Blanket week in review?

I also went out and picked up two more colors to add to the other eight I already had:

The black skein is what I'll use for my blanket's border.

How was your week? Are you participating in this CAL? If so leave me your blog link or Instagram name below so I can follow!


Friday, January 3, 2014

5 on Friday

 Happy Friday & Happy New Year!
How about Five on Friday?
No Resolutions for me this year! I'm just making goals. I wrote down five goals in total. I think 4/5 were money related and my 5th was to better my relationships. All things that are very possible and that I'm happy to do!  What are your 2014 Goals and/or Resolutions? Did you make any?
Made my first block for my Crochet Mood Blanket ::

Yellow for HAPPY! It was a great day to start the new year. I got a kiss from my boo at midnight, had a movie date with my mom on new years day and then had dinner with the fam that evening.

Block #2 for my mood blanket - CREATIVE. I decided to go with a flat braid join for this blanket. First time with this joining technique. Doesn't look bad ... right?
Annnnd I used my handmade coffee cozy for the first time. I don't think I realized how cute it was until today. I need to make more and sell them! 

oh. I forgot to mention that on new year's day after the movie I went and got TWO chocolate ganache cupcakes. MMM-MMM-Good. Mouth watering now just thinking about it. What sweet did you kick your New Year off with?
I love seeing this in my email. I ordered something very special for a friend. I can't wait to get it and gift it!
What are your Five on Friday (or even one on Friday)? Leave your comment/link below. I can't wait to see how the first few days of the New Year have been for you!