Tuesday, July 29, 2008

I'm a winner...

Twice in one week, I won something. And I honestly never win anything. Last week I won $100 on a scratch off lottery ticket. The money went for.... wait for it... yarn (shocker). And then it put some gas in my gas tank. So yeah, that was about it for those winnings.

Then today, I found out I won some of WendyKnits leftover Wollmeise. Yay for the random number generator that picked my comment.

And in a delicious bit of universe karma, I spent most of my day giving away stuff too. As I think I mentioned before (sometimes I forget what I plurk vs. what I blog) York College gave us used computers to give to families dealing with Autism Spectrum Disorders. So this morning, I spent some quality time with the random number generator at www.random.org and distributed 22 laptops and desktops to local families. Then of course, I made a mistake when I notified some of them, but I've got it mostly all straightened out now. Pickups are this Thursday & Friday. Yay!

And then I learned a new skill today. I love it when I learn new things. Today I learned how to take a google spreadsheet & turn it into a form for use on websites and blogs. When people fill the form, it automatically slings the answers into my spreadsheet. No more taking hundreds of emails and converting people's random way of submitting information for me! No siree -- yay google!!! Oh, if you wanna see my handiwork, you can find it here.

I have knitting to share, but I can't, at least not till Santa delivers his Christmas in July package to my secret pal.

Oh, I do have some knitting news though, I joined the Ravelympics, on the Team Harrisburg Socks. I'm a WIP Wrestler! I'll be completing all the baby objects for my nephew, due at the end of September. He's gorgeous already, dontcha think? Look out little man, you got a boatload of snuggle, cuddles and squishy knitables coming your way!

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Christmas in July...

One of the coolest things I've done since joining Ravelry was to become involved with the Harrisburg Sock Knitter's group. I joined pretty much on day one and it has been exciting to watch it grow. Tonya, our fearless leader, is a big fan of swaps, so this month we did Christmas in July. I got the biggest, bestest swap box ever!!!

It was filled with 3 different skeins of sock yarn. Three! Including Sockotta, Regia & Socks that Rock. Some amazing handmade jewelry that my swap partner, Kathy, actually made herself. Awesome flex needles -- so awesome in fact that one pair is not in the picture, but currently in use working my Lady February sweater. More of the swappy goodness: 2 notepads, matching tote bag, "Knitting on the Road" from my Amazon wishlist, the newest Vogue Knitting, a beautiful glass dove ornament, handmade soap & a gorgeous jewelry box.

More photos of the yum can be found on my flickr.

Just the sunshiney lift I needed this week. Thank you Kathy, you are amazing!!!

Friday, July 18, 2008

the week that was....

It has been a really long week. We did the MRI. It did not go smoothly, but at least it's over & they say they got good pictures. We are waiting to hear the results.

I went shopping for Beastie's birthday. What should be a happy occasion was sobering because I was buying him toys designed for ages 12-18 months for his 5th birthday. That just makes me indescribably sad. Of course, I probably have pms too.

On a happy note, there was knitting! I worked on sweaters. Because, you know, it's 10,000 degrees with 40,000% humidity, so let's knit sweaters! Pics of those in progress coming soon.

There is was also some sock knitting for a special someone. I can share a pic, but I can't say who it is for, at least not yet.

These are my red rag wool socks. Made from O-wool balance, 50% wool, 50% cotton. The pic is from my cell, so forgive the quality. And I realize they look like little person socks, but they really are big enough to fit even my monster-sized feet. I knit them on size 4 needles, which is just like sock candy at that point. My tolerance for tiny needles is decreasing as my desire to have more FOs increases. Something about that darn progress bar on the left side keeping me honest & on the right path.

And I made a Wordle. I have no idea why the word "going" is so abundant. I guess I am often "going" to do something. I wish the word "accomplished" were in there somewhere. At any rate, here you have it...
(click to see it bigger)

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

finding my inner farmgirl

As a person I have changed so much over the past 10 years or so. Obviously, being Beastie's mom has had a lot to do with that. But moreso, I think it is finding contentment in my life & that I am no longer searching for whatever it was that I had been searching for; seems I have found it without even realizing.

I've always been going, going, going, driving to find that thing that would complete me. The thing that would make me feel that I had finally accomplished enough, been good enough, been successful enough. But of course, it was never enough.

Then God brought me John. Or I should say He let me find John. And from there, my life began to change. Slowly at first, but eventually I began to settle down. Not settle, mind you, but began to find the contentment I had always sought. I was a soccer mom & a career woman and a dang good cook and I had found a place in my life that made me happy. I devoted my life to O & A (Orin, my oldest & Alex, 2 years younger). Life was good.

And then God found fit to give me Beastie. And wow, did that throw me for a loop. O & A were practically teens. Did I really want to do this all over again? And then, we had our angel, our perfect little boy, except he wasn't perfect. He was broken. But God only showed me a little bit of that broken at a time. If he had hit me with it all at once, I would have crumpled. So I took my broken little boy and worked as hard as I could to find him the best people to help him get through life. Beastie started developmental therapy at 9 months. He got an autism diagnosis at 19 months. He was evaled for seizure disorder at 3. He went to a feeding clinic to learn to eat when he was 4. He had surgery on his legs this past winter to help him walk. He got glasses two weeks ago. And now, three weeks before he turns 5 we realize that there might be neurological problems going on in that sweet little Beastie brain of his. More issues then just the autism. Issues that might be really, really bad. Or maybe just something he was born with and something else we will learn to live with. For the next 3 weeks I'm just waiting for someone to tell me what they see when they look at MRIs & brain scans. And waiting for someone to tell me it will be okay, no matter what.

So while I was busy being Beastie's mom, I gave up my career. But I still had the drive and the desire to accomplish more. So I co-founded a designer handspinning business. It thrived. I thrived. I devoted my heart and soul to it. But because everything happens for a reason, I had to let it go. God took it out of my hands and took my business partner and soul mate 3,000 miles away. I gave it up, but felt that I still needed something to occupy my energy. I helped to start our local chapter of the Autism Society of America and became the president. I figured it was my job to help other families cope with this devastating disease. I've volunteered probably 1,000 hours the past year, at least. I've fought for the things I believed in & helped others find the resources they needed to move forward. And all the while, I kept chugging along with my family, doing what needed to be done, every day, and yet still thinking I needed more.

But recently, I've started to change. I've started to embrace the real me. I'm learning to accept that I don't always need to be in charge. I don't need to lead the parade or be the top name on the list or have control of every little thing. I am beginning to say 'no' when people ask me if I can do something. I am scaling back my life outside of my home & focusing on what makes me and the people I love happy. I am embracing my inner farmgirl and learning how to breathe again. I am realizing that I don't need to impress anyone, don't need to change the world single-handedly, don't need to be the very, very best at everything. I can just be me & and that is good enough.

I've been blessed to find a wonderful group of friends in the online community Plurk. They make me laugh constantly, give me something to strive for and hug me when I am scared. Together we are embarking on a journey called the Plurkette Hencircle where we will challenge each other and ourselves to strive to be what it is we are each searching to become. Oh, and we will have fun. We will laugh and cry and grow and together, they will help me find that inner farmgirl that I have been searching for for so long.