I’m Blessed

What an amazing week it’s been.  I’ve been feeling so blessed.

The rain has driven Knut home more than we had expected.  Of course, I want him to be able to plant, and I don’t like delays either.  However, it’s sure nice to have him home to help out too.  I won’t complain.

My Serina Cardigan was self published on the Ravelry.com site.  It took off faster than any of my other patterns have.  I had goals for how well I wanted it to do in the first month.  Triple that number, and you have what I got in the first day of it’s release.  I was completely blown away by it’s popularity, and mentally I was not prepared for it.

You see, I’ve been reading a bit of garment shaping techniques by an amazing knitwear designer who goes by Ysolda.  She’s amazing.  Everything she does is amazing, and everything she makes is amazing.  When studying the techniques of a designer way more qualified than me, I was starting to feel like I was a fraud.  She’s a real designer.  I have no idea what I’m doing next to her.

I was praying about it, and God laid on my heart that he gives me the skills to do what I need to do, when I need to do them.  So I can’t design as well as her.  I bet she couldn’t make a grocery trip run with 4 kids in tow.  (That’s in my mind my crowning achievement of each week.)  I’m getting better, and I’m learning as much as I can about the craft I love.  Just because I haven’t arrived doesn’t mean I won’t.

It was after that when the Serina Cardigan was released and all the lovely chaos of my inbox filling up and people buying the pattern happened.  As silly as it sounds, I feel like God gave me that success…just because.  Just because He loves me.  Just because He felt I needed a big success.  Just because He’s a daddy that loves to give good things to His children.

I feel like I need to add a disclaimer to every design, or every blog post, or anything else I do that may interest people.  Saying something like: “I’m just a mom.  My house is messy, and I lose my temper.  If you look hard enough (or casually browse) you’ll probably find mistakes.  I’m just a mom surrounded by little kids all day and loving on them as much as I can, so these other worldly successes may have to take a back burner, and I can’t be as successful and polished as those who have the ability to devote their life to their job.”

This last week, God reminded me that my primary label is “Daughter of the King.”  I worry that the more I attempt to accomplish things, the more mistakes I’ve made will be found.  God continually encourages me on saying that whatever He asks me to do, whether changing diapers or knitting up a hat, is for the purpose of people seeing Him when they look hard enough or casually browse my work.

I feel so humbled at the idea that God would take an interest in me, and in the things that fill my day.  Can there be any greater blessing?

If you want to share how God has blessed you this last week, please join in!  Either leave a comment below, sharing with the class and/or write your own blog post, put a link to this blog in your post, then copy and paste the address to your blog post below.  It’s really quite simple.

Thank you to everyone who reads this too.  You readers are such a blessing to me as well.  I’m blessed to share my life with you.

Serina Cardigan

I know I’ve been calling this cardigan both “Ginger” and “Serina.”  Serina was the original name, but the color yarn I was using was called “Ginger” and I thought that was cute too.  However, when I was publishing it, I did one last check to see how many other “Ginger Cardigans” there were.  There were about 5 other cardigan patterns by that name, and none by the name of “Serina.”  So I switched back last minute.  Hope that wasn’t too confusing.  😉

This project finally got done!  This is my first cardigan pattern and has so many “firsts” for me!  Earlier this week I got it back from the tech editor who gave me a few more things to polish it up (as always), and this week I was working on finishing all of the pattern details.  Last night I published it on Ravelry, and it’s available to anyone who wants it here, too.  Just click here:


A quick rundown of details:
This cardigan is worked using sock weight yarn from the top down, all in one piece with no seaming.  It has a very, very simple lace detailing in the back panel that is quite simple and repetitive to work.  The ribbed front edges and neck are picked up and knit after the body is complete.

I used Madelinetosh Tosh Sock yarn in the colorway ‘ginger’ and it was a delight to work with!  I will be using Madelinetosh yarns again, that’s for sure!  I may have to pick another project using this yarn soon, because this one is getting worn so much it’d probably be prudent to have a rotation going.

Teacher Notes

School this week has been mostly of the outside kind.  I try to make sure that before we head out either on errands or into the garden each day, that Silje and David have at least completed Bible, language arts (their readers at least) and math.  We do our read alouds before bed, but this week that’s all we’ve been able to manage.

David has been loving Follow My Leader.  Loving may be an understatement.  Silje loves me reading it again as she claims it was her favorite book from last year.  We’ve been trudging through his readers lately, and I’m very concerned I’m giving him too difficult of books.  Then we got over a huge hump when he told me yesterday when he was deep in thought, “Mommy, I’m starting to like books without pictures in them, more than books with pictures.  The books with more words than pictures have more adventure in them, and I like adventure.”

It was a good moment.  I’m learning that just because he doesn’t speed through a book doesn’t mean he’s not enjoying it.  He pauses a lot to ponder.  He gets stuck on an idea and likes to explore it in his head before moving on.  I call them ‘hiccups’ in his reading.  I had no idea he was loving every minute of it.

The kids made a bunch of popsicle stick boxes the other day.  I showed them how to start the base, and now there’s about 7 of them on my dining room table, and I’m not sure what we’re going to do with them all.  I got a box of 1000 popsicle sticks last summer at the craft store and we barely dented it.

I may have mentioned before, but we’ve been getting in boxes of curriculum most days.  I ordered some of mine used on ebay, and some new and used on amazon, and still more from Sonlight.  I saved some money doing that this year, and it’s been a steady stream of boxes coming to our house.  The bookshelves in the den that Knut is building for our expanding book collection is not done yet, and has little chance of getting done during this planting season.  So for now, the safest place to be is with the popsicle stick boxes on the dining room table.  Anywhere else and Solveig and Elias start exploring them.

As you can tell from yesterday’s post, there has been a lot of outside playing going on over here.  I’m not stressing about it much that our school day has been short lately.  Mostly because David has been working on his 1st grade work for next year, and Silje is working on her 3rd grade work for next year, and I plan on doing these “small days” through the summer, so unless I am intending them to skip a grade just for the fun of it, I either need to slow down, or let the kids enjoy these nice weather days when I can.

Good or Bad

This week I’m really working hard to get the garden all planted.  This includes transplanting the strawberries from their overgrown patch to long rows protected with landscaping cloth and “mulch” from the chicken coop litter.  It also includes planting all the rest of the vegis… and neither of those 2 jobs are done yet.  However, the week isn’t done yet either, so we’re good.

Knut finally tilled the whole garden for me.  He tills deep, and afterwards it’s a big pit of soft, dark soil.  I had to keep working on the strawberries, and of course the kids wanted to come with.  So they took off the shoes and ran across the soil that they sank into many inches with each step.  They built dirt castles.  They ran leaping races.  The above picture you’ll see what I saw for a few hours as I dug up the strawberry plants.  (That row is spinach that just started coming up this year.  I guess I accidentally let some go to seed last year.  O well, head start with spinach.)  Knut moved it into a row as he was tilling.

Silje and David had a blast burying their feet, leaping across end to end, and making dirt angels.  I kept thinking, “Does it make me a good mother, or a bad mother that I’m letting them get this dirty?”

Elias played by himself mostly, which is pretty typical for him.  He doesn’t like people messing with his stuff.  He mostly made dirt castles.

Solveig was a riot to watch.  She mostly preferred laying on her belly, and just playing with the dirt in front of her.  Lifting it up, letting it drop.  Repeat.

I’m pretty sure she was playing with some worms, too.

The kids all got a much needed bath that night, after way too much dirt was trampled across my house.  I found out later that I wasn’t supposed to let them play in the freshly tilled garden as I worked on the strawberries because the footprints will make my seed planting go at different depths, and that’s bad.  So I guess it doesn’t necessarily make me a bad mom, just a bad gardener.  Well, I can handle that

I’m surprised that each year I find out more things that I should and shouldn’t do that seem to be common knowledge to most farmers wives.  I remember my first garden I didn’t know you were supposed to plant along a plumb line to make sure your rows were perfectly straight.  Knut was horrified when our peas came up in a long wiggly line.  I told him if he complains, next year I’m just spinning around in a circle with random seeds in my hand and we’ll see what grows where.  That’ll get people talkin’.

And that’s how this farmer’s wife rolls…