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life update

First off, thanks everyone for your kind comments on my new Faux Knit Puffy Cowl pattern.  I’ve been super inspired lately and there’s another pattern in the works now, too!  Unfortunately though, I haven’t done much in the way of knitting or crocheting in the past few days, so I don’t have much crafty stuff to share today.  The only related news is that I just ordered some KnitPro Zing straight needles (12″ versions) from www.knitproneedles.co.uk — shout out to them for shipping to the US, or else I’d have a hard time getting ahold of them!  I’ll share photos & a review when they arrive and I’ve had a chance to try them out.

At work I’ve had some ups and downs lately; I had a great opportunity but I passed it up because I’m not quite ready.  I feel relieved, like I did the right thing, but I am still a tad bit down about it.  We also are building on to our clubhouse, and the addition was completed on Thursday.  We spent all Friday moving everything over to the new side so that they can renovate the old side, so it’s going to be a bit chaotic for a couple of months.

In addition to that chaos, I’ve been off lately, emotionally speaking.  Depressed, to be honest, and anxious.  Having some personal issues.  My hormones have also been changing due to a change in types of birth control (sorry if that’s TMI), so that doesn’t help.

To combat the chaos and depression and fluctuating hormones, I’ve been working on some coping skills the past couple of weeks.  The first is just practicing mindfulness, or being in the moment.  Too much of my life has been spent worrying about the future or dwelling on the past and that’s got to change.  Chris made me some little reminders and stuck them all over the house and on my keys and in my wallet, so those reminders help me remember to “check in” and see if I’m being mindful or not (and if not, then I try to be).  That’s already helping a little with the depression and anxiety.

I’ve also started back in the mindful practice of martial arts, particularly Wing Chun Kung Fu (and the fact that it’s a bit of exercise also helps, with all those happy brain chemicals that are released).  A couple of years ago I was super into it but my friend, who was teaching me, lives about 2 hours away so it kind of fell off.  We’re reviving the lessons though, and I’m also joining a martial arts center where they have Wing Chun lessons for an hour every Saturday.  It’s expensive but it’s cheaper than therapy, and I walk away feeling much the same (albeit for different reasons; the point is, it helps a lot).  I’ve already met a couple of women there that I’ve really enjoyed working with so hopefully I’ll be making new friends, which also should help things since my support network outside of family and coworkers is almost nonexistent nowadays.  The center gave me a t-shirt to wear for lessons:

IMG_5414

I’m really excited about both the paid lessons there and the lessons with my friend; I feel like they are going to make a big difference in my life, even though it seems like a small thing to be doing.  I’ve already learned a little bit that I can practice at home by myself, and my teacher has a YouTube channel with videos he made of the forms in case I forget!

Well I guess that’s all for today.  I hope that wasn’t too boring!  I plan on crafting some today so hopefully I’ll have more crocheting/knitting related updates coming up really soon.  Thanks so much for stopping by!

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5 days, 5 stripes

I’ve been working on the paulie cardigan and I’ve gotten 5 stripes finished:

paulie5stripesThe edges are a bit curly but you get the drift.  I’m really liking it so far and it’s fitting fine, too, so I can’t wait to get it done!

pauliestripescloseI must say that the purling rows are really slowing me down, but that’s OK.  It’s looking so pretty!

That’s really all I’ve got to show today, and nothing too thrilling has been going on in my life this week.  Chris and I are still doing wing chun with our friend and I’m already noticing a difference in my flexibility and maybe even weight loss.  (Is is too soon to really tell?  I dunno, I may be imagining that.)  It’s fun, in any case, and it really is making my mood better in general.  My old therapist was telling the truth when she said exercise makes you feel better!

Thanks for stopping by, hope you stop by again soon!

 

 

the rest of my life

I really wanted to share some non-crafty things with you that are going on in my life right now.  I hope that’s OK — I’ll be back to crafting in my next post, I promise.

Firstly, I graduate with my masters in clinical counseling this May!  Hooray!  I’m excited to finally be done with school, since I’ve been at it for 5/6 of my life, and I’m excited about “being a grown-up.”  Of course on the flip side, I’m terrified — I don’t feel prepared to counsel anybody, I’m worried about passing my exit and licence exams, I’m worried about finding a job ASAP so that there’s no break between school and a job (I can’t afford to sit around doing nothing when I’ll have loans to start paying off), and I’m worried about going into more debt.  Once I graduate, to get licensed I still have to be supervised for 15oo hours, I believe, and I’ll have to pay someone to supervise me.  So even though I’ll have a job, I’ll be paying off loans and paying whoever is my supervisor.  Can you tell I’m worried?  It runs in the family.

I’ve got some good things going on, too: I’m making a journal for my “loss, grief, and crisis counseling” class!

journal

We have to really reflect on our experiences with loss/grief/crisis, and I’m enjoying it so far.  I’m making it a sort of art journal (hence the markers in the picture) and really putting thought and time into what I write, and it’s helping me realize a lot about myself and how I deal (or haven’t dealt) with grief/loss/crisis.  Of course we’re using what we’re learning in class to help us look at our experiences, so it puts a new light on things.  Have you ever had such a journal, or have you had a similar experience?

And surprise surprise, I’m exercising!  It’s totally unexpected for me — I’ve traditionally been the soft, unfit, unmotivated, and unhealthy type, but Chris and our friend Jamie have convinced me to give it a try.  Jamie studied wing chun (a close-range Chinese martial art) in China for about 2 years, and he’s teaching Chris and me.  He’s a good teacher and is very patient, which is good because Chris and I aren’t very coordinated or athletic.  I want to get to the point where I can easily defend myself against a larger and stronger opponent (our school parking lots are creepy and lots of bad things happen there).  I’m also doing it for the physical benefits of losing a little weight, gaining some muscle, and strengthening my heart.  We have equipment for practicing kicks and punches, and Jamie got us these:

wraps

We need wrist wraps for repeated punching while our wrists are pretty weak.  So yeah, it’s pretty complicated and difficult and painful (my whole body is sore today and I’ve got bruises on my arms), but it’s really fun too, and I think it will definitely be worth all the time, effort, and physical discomfort.  If you have ever tried wing chun or martial arts in general, feel free to let the advice/stories flow!

As far as yarncrafts go, my socks are still in the works and the needles for my sweater haven’t arrived yet, so there’s nothing to really post about at this time.  Hopefully soon!

Thanks for stopping by, and I appreciate you taking the time to read about what’s going on for me.  I’ll be back to crocheting/knitting next time!

 

 

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