Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Yarn Along

Happy Wednesday and Happy Yarn Along Day! Linking up with Ginny from Small Things :)



This past weekend, I had the exciting fun of combining knitting and crochet together.  I used the same pattern that I used on this scarf that I presented for the Yarn Along a few weeks ago, but I feared that I would run out of yarn before I could complete it, so I excluded one of the pattern repeats.  To compensate for the width though, I considered crocheting a border around the edges.  I think the scalloped edge really sets the scarf apart, and I'm so excited with how it turned out!  I could not be more thrilled.

Monday, October 28, 2013

"There is a sacredness in tears. They are not the mark of weakness, but of power. They speak more eloquently than ten thousand tongues. They are messengers of overwhelming grief...and unspeakable love."

 - Washington Irving

Saturday, October 26, 2013

The Holidays are Coming! The Holidays are Coming!

This title of course to be said in the style of Paul Revere.

As of yesterday, it's only two months until Christmas.  I'm the kind of person that gets upset that Thanksgiving is pretty much looked over because of the imminent Christmas season, but being a crafter and a lover of all things homemade, I really need to start thinking about Christmas early.

I've started my gift planning by making a list of all the homemade things that I want to make this year to give to family, and the next step in the process will be to go through my yarn stash, see what I can use up and see what yarn I will need to buy.  The hard part of course will be to not buy more yarn than I need, thus adding to the aforementioned stash.  What can I say, I have a small obsession with yarn-y things.

The next step is to obviously set about knitting frantically all the things I want to make in time for Christmas.  I have a pretty high goal this year, and although two months sounds like a decent amount of time to get things done, as fast as this month went, Christmas will be here before we know it.  Plus there's the added effort of having to get through the rest of the semester.  I may be a senior, but I'm trying my hardest to not put school on the back burner. Chant with me: I will not get senioritis.  I will not get senioritis.  I will not get senioritis.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

The Role of Ritual in Religion

I talked a few months ago about the "Theology on Tap" group that I joined back in January. We get together the second Thursday of every month to discuss an aspect of theology and our faith. Sometimes we have a guest speaker who will guide the discussion, but sometimes we just have a certain topic that we just have an open forum discussion about, as was the case for this month's meeting.

This month, we discussed the role of ritual in religion, and I loved it. We all opened up about whether or not we thought ritual was a good thing, and I think the general consensus was that ritual is a healthy part of religion. Ritual is a symbolic repeated action that often transcends the use of words.

As repetitive action is the root of ritual, it is truly the essence of human learning. It is true that not all ritual is religious, but the ideas are the same. Take for instance the ritual between a mother and her child--this interaction shows that when practiced between people, ritual gives rise to love. And who's to say that one of those two people involved in a ritualistic act can't be God? I think the love that God has for us, and our love for Him, gives rise to all the other love in our lives. And that is pretty darn special.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Yarn Along

Happy Wednesday and Happy Yarn Along Day! Linking up with Ginny from Small Things :)

It's been a while since I had a knitting project on the needles.  Too long in fact.  But I started this new project last night while watching the most recent episode of New Girl.  I love this basket rib pattern by Traci Heiner--it's so dynamic and textured.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Tuesday Tea: The Dharma Bums

"The first sip of tea is joy, the second is gladness, the third is serenity, the fourth is madness, the fifth is ecstasy."

- Jack Kerouac, The Dharma Bums

If you read this blog even semi-regularly, you know that I have a profound love for Jack Kerouac, especially his novel The Dharma Bums.  I first read this book during a time when Kerouac's autobiographical words really hit home for me, especially his speculations about God, spirituality, and life.  This book introduced me to a spiritual mode of thinking that I think I've carried with  me ever since, and the overarching themes of compassion, simplicity, and spontaneity are things that I try to put into practice.

When I took a prayer and meditation class as a senior in high school, one of the most important things I was taught was to not lose my childish innocence, and The Dharma Bums emphasizes this all over again for me.

"To the children and the innocent, it's all the same."

One cup of tea with a side of simplicity, please.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

A to Z Book Survey

I've seen this list on a few different blogs, and I wanted to give filling it in myself a go.  Some of these questions were hard!

Author you’ve read the most books from.
Jack Kerouac. I've read over seven of his novels including one of his books of poetry.

Best sequel ever.

Rebels Angels by Libba Bray, the sequel to A Great and Terrible Beauty. Between the fantasy and the budding semi-romance between Gemma and Kartik, I devoured this book whole.

Currently reading.
A Breath of Snow and Ashes by Diana Gabaldon.

Drink of choice while reading.
No surprise: Tea! It's starting to get colder, so my tea addiction is probably going to start increasing exponentially.

E-reader or physical book? 

This is a tough one. I love everything about a physical book--the smell, the feel, bookmarks--except for the inconvenience of lugging it around. Especially on vacation, e-readers are the way to go since you can save so much luggage space by having all your books stored in one convenient place.

Fictional character you probably would have actually dated in high school. 

Well, I never dated in high school, but if I had my pick of the litter, I would have dated complex pretty boy Jon Snow. Or Severus Snape, even though he would have been slightly out of my age range by about 20 years. Or Cadvan from the Pellinor series.  Apparently, high school Kerry had a soft spot for brooding characters.

Glad you gave this book a chance. 

Ender's Game by Orsen Scott Card. I don't usually go for science fiction novels, but this book blew my mind. I can't wait for the movie to release next month.

Hidden gem book.

Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close by Jonathan Safran Foer.  Okay, so maybe this isn't a hidden gem for most people given its wide popularity, but at the time when I read it, it was a hidden gem for me given that I had never heard anyone mention it before.

Important moment in your reading life. 

Before I could even read, I used to pick a big word in a book, ask what it was, and then learn how to spell it.  The first word I ever did this with was butterfly.

Just finished.

The Tipping Point by Malcolm Gladwell.  I didn't completely agree with everything in this book, but he did make some interesting points.

Kinds of books you won’t read. 

Honestly, I read pretty much everything.  I read some things more than others, but in general, there isn't a genre that I completely avoid.  If someone recommends a book to me, I'll usually read it whether it be science fiction, historical romance, or even nonfiction.

Longest book you’ve ever read. 

Goodreads tells me that would be George R.R. Martin’s A Storm of Swords coming in at 1,177 pages of literary awesomeness.

Major book hangover because of

One Day by David Nicholls.  This book continues to haunt me with its beauty.

Number of bookcases you own. 

Not enough.  Most of my books have just accumulated on my dresser, in my closet, and even a crate on the floor.

One book you have read multiple times.

Outlander by Diana Gabaldon.

Preferred place to read.

In a comfy armchair with a warm blanket and a cup of tea.

Quote from a book you’ve read that inspires you.
"the only people for me are the mad ones, the ones who are mad to live, mad to talk, mad to be saved, desirous of everything at the same time, the ones who never yawn or say a commonplace thing, but burn, burn, burn like fabulous yellow roman candles exploding like spiders across the stars." - Jack Kerouac, On the Road

Reading regret. 

There are several books that I read during high school for certain English classes that I feel I did not fully appreciate.  I would like to give some of them a chance again, but my impression of them is too soiled by being forced to read them.

Series you started and need to finish.

A Song of Ice and Fire.  But then again, George R. R. Martin hasn't even finished the series, so I've got some time.  My goal is just to be caught up before the new seasons air on HBO.  I'm about halfway through A Feast for Crows, so I'm good for now in that regard.

Three of your all-time favourite books. 
The Dharma Bums by Jack Kerouac, The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky, and The Unbearable Lightness of Being by Milan Kundera. Woof, that was hard to narrow down...

Unapologetic fangirl for… 
Severus Snape.  You guys, I wrote fan-fiction that centered around him.  Enough said.

Very excited for this release more than all the others.

Written in My Own Heart's Blood, the eighth book in the Outlander series by Diana Gabaldon.  I'm finishing up the seventh book now, and I'm already itching for the next in the series.

Worst bookish habit.

I hate dog-earring books, but I'm also bad about using bookmarks.  The end result: I usually just close the book without marking my spot and suffer for it later as I backtrack and find where I left off.

X marks the spot: the 27th book on my shelf. 

Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte.

Your latest book purchase. 

Knit Two by Kate Jacobs.

Zzz-snatcher book (latest book that kept you up way late).
The Fault in Our Stars by John Green.  I knew the end of this book was going to be sad, but I stayed up late to finish it anyways because I couldn't stop.  I ended up bawling my eyes out at 2 in the morning.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Tuesday Tea: From Chicago

This Tuesday Tea coming to you from Chicago's Midway Airport! I am currently sitting at my gate, waiting for my flight to board, and drinking a delicious cup of English Breakfast tea. Although I would rather not be leaving, this Fall Break was really wonderful. It's been a while since I did a post detailing my Chicago adventures, and after such an amazing long weekend, I think it deserves its own post. Sneak peek: I got to pet a giraffe.

But now, we're boarding the plane, so until later...

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Tuesday Tea: Midterms Schmidterms

It's not particularly groundbreaking news to hear that midterms are no fun, especially when you have three of them over the course of a mere four days.  But when I think about what lies ahead after I finish these midterms, Fall Break, I get a little bit of belief that I can pretty much overcome anything.  Like last year, I am going up to Chicago to see David over the long weekend, and I can't wait.  I can't believe last year's Fall Break was the first time I had ever been to Chicago.  It's so nice to know that I have someone as awesome as David waiting for me at the end of this week of tests.

In the meantime though, I am one midterm down with two to go, so I will bid you adieu for now and go in search of another cup of tea to help me get through the rest of tonight's studying.

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Yarn Along

Happy Wednesday and Happy Yarn Along Day! Linking up with Ginny from Small Things :)

Okay, you caught me, this isn't exactly a yarn project, but my knitting needles are on a slight hiatus at the moment as I'm frantically trying to finish this giant cross-stitch (the picture isn't even showing a fourth of it).  I've got a hard-set deadline on this, so I've been trying to devote time to it everyday, but considering midterms are coming up, it's getting harder and harder to find time to craft as the semester progresses.

So forgive my lack of a yarn project.  Can we extend the yarn along to a more general craft along this week? :)

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Tuesday Tea: October 1st

If you can believe it, October is already here, and although the next two weeks are going to be insanely hectic in my classes, there are definitely some things that I'm looking forward to this month:

1. Cooler weather = more tea
2. Moccasins
3. Wearing scarves
4. Knitting cold weather items
5. Fall Break
6. Halloween
7. Boots!
8. Next month, my nephew, Luke, will be born!

School may be getting crazy, but I have so much to be thankful for :)