Monday, May 25, 2015

My blog is alive...

I've been crocheting less and less.. and blogging even lesser...   I missed my blog, and in fear of going through a hiatus ( again for the nnth time ), albeit a happier hiatus compared to previous incidents, I decided to write this post.

Most of the things that I dealt with, in the past, are starting to make sense. And because of that, I am needing crochet less and less,  it seems.

Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar

It's summer here in our side of the world, so that is maybe why I am not in the mood to sit down in one place and crochet.  I am not really productive crochet-wise during summer. The weather is scorching hot.

My small family went to a short trip in Las Casas de Acuzar, in Bagac. It is a heritage resort in Bataan.

I didn't bring any yarn or crochet hook with me. I just spent time with  my family and enjoy this place.

I will go back again maybe later this year, so I can stay in that side of the heritage resort.

My husband and I are couch potatoes, and this is our first attempt to really go out of the couch. Dylan had a blast swimming in this manmade creek , or in our native tongue is called "Batis".

I am still testing the waters.. meaning. I am still not sure if I will enjoy travelling. However, I will not find out until I tried right?

Two weeks after this mini trip, I got sick. It is only today that Im starting to go back to my usual routine.

I started to loose interest with crochet, maybe due to the weather....

How about you? What is keeping you busy this summer?

Thursday, May 7, 2015

instead of getting even...

"Don't be mad, don't get even, get even better instead......"

This statement flipped a switch. Why not , indeed?

There was a  point in my life, when I was in self-destruct mode. Partying all night, thinking only of the next day, not "tomorrow". Justifying my actions because of the "hate" that was in my heart.

I used to have companions during that time. They are also going through the same things, girls from different walks of life united with a common goal, and so we party together. Eventually, we all got tired of what we are doing, and one by one , my girls started to settle down.

And then,  that time came when it's my turn to quit, I got tired waking up with a hang over.  So, I stopped drinking and partying . I thought that I was already a grown up just because I did that.

I was wrong.

I was 25, when my then boyfriend and I started toying with the idea of settling down.  That was 2008.  We thought we knew everything. What I don't understand back then,  was that , I quit partying so my life will have it's much needed direction, and yet, things started to fall apart even more.

At least, that was how I view it, until recently.

It has been 7 years since I completely left our boarding house in Malate, changed jobs and move somewhere else. I used to always say that all my problems started in 2008. Because , before 2008, I don't really care what happens to me, therefore, I don't worry about things in life, so I don't have a problem. ahahahah

Since I started caring about a "future", and thought about being more responsible, I now have all these problems.  lol

I just realized that 2008 was in fact a blessing in disguise.

What I view back then as "falling apart" is actually more like "things falling in their rightful places" , and that is quite a painful process. When things got tough, I put the blame on other people. I was not really  prepared for the consequences of my actions at the time.

2010 was for me the year that I hit rock bottom, followed by my very slow recovery from post partum depression.

To actually see yourself for who you are,  after thinking otherwise all those years, is perhaps one of the most painful experiences anyone can have. But I know in my heart, that I became a better person because of those humbling realizations.

Starting 2008 and until 2012, I was always in some sort of argument and misunderstanding with another person. I cannot count anymore how many people I ran into conflict with. And then, there are those betrayals that I just can't accept.

I used to hold on to my grudges. I actually nurtured them. Being angry made me feel that I was stronger. It did in fact sustain me for years. But then our hearts are not made for hatred, so it can only hold so much, it will get tired eventually.

I woke up one day, and decided to no longer have regrets.  I felt that I am ready to forgive, and stop remembering.

Although, I don't see any need to repair broken bridges,  like those friendships that I had to leave, and other relationships which only brought conflict into my life.

I finally accepted that there are relationships that are really not worth keeping. As it brings only the negative out of the people involved.

I decided that I'll just keep what worked ever since and stick only to those,  because in life, we cannot have everything. We can only accept that there are areas in life where we are just not lucky.

I learned that,  not because a friendship between two people did not work, it doesn't mean that one  or both of them has a problem, sometimes, it's all about compatibility. In this journey called life, you will meet people , you either learn something from them, or you meet them because they have a purpose in your life, or you have a purpose in theirs. Not everybody is meant to stay too, you are also meant to leave others, but everybody should go on with their own journeys...

Those old offenses you took, they just have to happen.

There is always a reason why, sometimes, it's as simple as this: it needs to happen so you will go that way, so you can find some of the best things in your life. 

Instead of getting even, it makes sense to just improve and be better. Of course, there are things worth fighting for, and this is where choosing your own battles becomes a useful skill.

As for the things that didn't work, sometimes they are just like that, things that will never work.  For that , there is only acceptance .

I'm learning how to forgive.

Friday, April 24, 2015

Starts with a Square Crochet top

This is another project which I attempted 3 times before. I  just cannot find the right yarn to work with.

That's a very silly reasoning coming from me. I  have more than 100 kgs of yarn in my stash. And I'm not bragging. ( I will show you how much yarn I own in due time.)

I wanted to explore this garment construction too, that's why I gave it another try. Using 2.75mm  Clover Soft Touch hook and Monaco Multicolor crochet thread. Besides,I just can't get over the fact that I attempted it 3 times, and gave up on it, when all I had to do is add rows.

It's a monotonous project, seeing that there is not really  a lot of variation on the stitch, but that is the reason why I choose to make this. I am a firm believer of investing in stitches.

I hope to finish this by adding some 5 rows daily, or whenever I feel like it, so that it will have some progress on it, while I work extensively on my Bag closer Bag and Dahlia.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Gumamela Tunic

I recently finished this Hibiscus tunic ( design by Mimi Alelis ),  I didn't plan to make this tunic this year, or at least, not as early as now because I have a list of 7 items that I should be able to finish this year first.

But I realized that finishing it is like hitting two birds with one stone. First, I wanted to use and experiment with the Baguio Classic Cotton yarn. Next , this is the perfect gift for my Aunt who I haven't seen in years.

I also wanted to try this type of construction of garments.  I thought at first that is an overwhelming project, but it was really very fast.

Here is a close up detail of the flowers:

I like the drape of Baguio Cotton, but this is really not for everybody.If you are a perfectionist, this yarn is not for you, according to my crochet buddy Moira. If you are in a hurry, this is also not for you, and that is according to me.

The hardest part when using this yarn is during the foundation chain. I discovered a trick to make it easier, and I will share that in my next post. This yarn is not meant for "rush" projects, and you shouldn't really hurry when using it because, it's very hard to frog the work if you made a mistake. The plied or stranded nature of this yarn, being an  improvised one, makes frogging very hard.  The strands tangles easily.

You can still frog the work , but it should be done very very carefully and slowly.  But once you get over it and get the hang of this yarn, the drape is to die for.  I don't recomment it for extra long projects though, it sorts of drags dangerously on very long lengths.

I haven't tried to block the work, but when washed, the work retained it's shape and size,  but for some reason, the curly nature of this recycled yarn seems to be more obvious after washing. But for me, it's just perfect. It didn't expand or shrink too. So I guess it does not really require blocking.

A Finished OFF! finally! Eternal Shrug

I finally finished my corrected version of Shrugs Springs Eternal, which took almost an "eternity" to finish, due to the many adjustments that I made on it.  I started on it sometime in 2011 and finished only yesterday.

Here is one of my previous attempts:

I changed yarns 5 times, and settled finally for a powder blue crochet thread. This blue one is my nth attempt for this shrug. And even so.. I frogged it 4 times..  before deciding that I really have to accept whatever output I can get.

Before weaving in ends...

The body of this shrug, is the most challenging, but once you joined the sleeves, everything is quick and easy. The sleeves are meant to puff like that. I was really challenged in the prospect of using crochet thread , for a project that used DK weight.

I honestly think that it's a bit too formal for a shrug..and too girly or too young for my taste. I like it , but I think it does look like there's too much effort going on, just wearing the shrug.

This is how the back looks.. I really love this stitch pattern!

It looks good with dresses with this type of neckline.

I am still glad that I finished it !

Here are my notes:

The pattern calls for DK weight yarn. It's too thick for me. So I insisted on using crochet thread. But I kept the required 3.5mm hook. Canon crochet thread is size 8 thread, not size 10. The difference on the gauge requires adjustments on the foundation rows and set up row where you place the markers.Some math is involved to get the measurements right, but resulting fabric is just so solid, but stretchable.

The pattern is meant to be worked back and forth as you turn after each row, this gives a criss cross effect for the cluster, and it gives the project an ample amount of texture.

I would like to make another in coral, making the ch 1 at each start as part of the row.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Dressing the part

Most of us heard of the motto "to not judge a book by it's cover ". However, when you are looking for a job, you cannot wear your party animal get up on your job interview and tell the interviewer that they shouldn't judge the book by it's cover.

The outside appearance is only one aspect. It doesn't mean that if someone looks like a professional,  that they are professional all way. But that should be the start, a good start.

Now here is an interesting idea from this article: Closet Psychology 101.

""Then think about who you want to be and "how does that woman dress", not a specific person, but your ideal self, and start dressing like her.""

3 years ago, I decided to give away a huge portion of my closet, and those clothes went to  my niece. Most of those are clothing that I used to own when I was in college.  I used to keep them thinking that I might be able to shrink back to that size and wear those clothes.  When I did the first sets of purging on my belongings, I only have "minimalism" in mind. I haven't heard about Closet Psychology yet.

According to this article, keeping and holding on to old clothes is a sign that a person is holding on to her past so much.

When I let go my college clothes, burned my college journals, some old letters  and threw away other items, it is ceremonial, but I honestly felt that was able to let go of  a huge baggage behind. I felt somehow lighter.

Knowing inside my head that those paraphernalia's are gone, I sort of stopped thinking about what those things reminded me off, effectively allowing me to forget most of what they reminded me off in the first place. So I really believe in what this article is saying.


Now, I am purging again, and what caught my attention now are the not so frequently used clothing, which are no longer from my college years but still unworn because they also don't fit . Quite the irony. First I've been keeping clothes that I thought I can wear again, and then I've been buying clothes which I thought I can wear when I loose weight.

There are two things that I can do to resolve this problem:
1. Give away everything that does not fit, and just buy clothes that fit.
2. Since these clothes are on sizes that I wear before I got pregnant, 3 years ago, I can really work so hard and loose the excess 35 lbs.

One easy solution and one hard solution.


Now, going back to this:

""Then think about who you want to be and "how does that woman dress", not a specific person, but your ideal self, and start dressing like her.""

Who exactly do I want to be?

I want to be a happy and fulfilled woman,  (who has some crochet in her wardrobe) . I no longer want to be a slave to my emotional baggages and frustrations in life. I don't wanna be stuck up in the past, and just dreaming about the future.  I guess I can start by dressing the part.

I'm not saying that simply having a different wardrobe,  will magically make me that happy woman, but I also realized that I also got tired with dealing with weight issues and clothing issues. I know in my heart that I didn't try hard enough, or there is something else that I haven't done.

If I can remove these clothing and weight issues in my life, then that is one less issue to think about.

Also, how does one incorporate crochet in the wardrobe and be happy?  ( hahaha ) I would like to find that out.

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