Friday, January 23, 2015

Depression, Revisited

What's amazing about depression is that no matter how hard I try to keep a happy smile plastered on my face, how many things I write on my to-do list, or how many sections in my planner, it just stays right there under the surface, waiting for me to let my guard down.  It comes for me when I really can't handle it--when I'm stretched so thin but everyone is depending on me to follow through even though I want to sit in bed and do nothing.  It comes when I loosen my grip on my planned-to-the-minute schedule, or when I slip up and eat something special like an extra piece of fruit for the week and then I completely stop losing weight (yes, metabolic disorders are that tricky to deal with.) It comes when the kids are having a rough week, or when the doctor recommends therapy and a specialist for the kid you thought wasn't like his brother and why does this keep happening but other people have it so much worse than you so get a grip and you resent yourself for even thinking these thoughts because it's so wrong but it's so hard not to.

The thing I hate about depression the most is that I can feel it coming on, but I'm powerless to stop it. I can blame it on hormones, or food that I eat, or just circumstances, but that doesn't make it go away.  It doesn't stop food tasting like glue, or my kids' voices sounding like nails on a chalkboard; their sticky little hugs like torture.  It doesn't stop the feeling that I'm not good enough.  Like I shouldn't be who I am, or have what I have.  That I shouldn't be married to this amazing guy who provides so well for our family because some people I know can't even buy groceries this week and others can't pay their mortgage but I can so why am I complaining?

I want to buck up. I want to go with the flow. I want to ignore it when someone takes advantage of me and asks me for even more because others don't have any to give and I'm so fortunate that I have more to spare.  But I'm tired. I want a break.

This week can suck it.  Tomorrow's a new day.

Monday, January 19, 2015

This Week

This week I...walked, visited the beach with my boys, took care of my girls (and their eggs!,) and rode the ferry to Vashon for a sew-in with my quilty peeps.  I finished a quilt top after a year of procrastination (Nordika, by Jeni Baker for Art Gallery Fabrics!)  Hopefully someday I'll make a back, baste it, and quilt it.  And then bind it.  Someday.  We also made a wild a crazy decision to send me to Bali in October for a much-needed retreat with a group of like minded women.  To say I'm excited is an understatement!  The rest of this week is filled with therapy appointments, babysitting a friend's boy, and cooking and knitting with each boy's classes.  Busy busy busy, so I probably won't get to do anything creative or me for awhile.  Here's hoping I can eek some creative time out of at least a bit of each day, so I don't go completely mad!

Monday, January 12, 2015


I've decided to choose a word for 2015.  I've never done this before, but I'm at a place in my life right now that it makes sense for me.


I'm going to do my best to remember this word as daily as possible, and when I stray to gather my thoughts and actions back to it.

After my birthday passed early this month, and after a long few weeks of holidays and being cozy and lazy and eating delicious food that was not anywhere near my usual allergen-free diet, plus a three-week stand-off against the flu, I was feeling pretty gross.  Not necessarily about myself or how I looked, but I physically felt bloated and full and lethargic.  Now that I know what it feels like to have my body healthy, this felt bad, so I've been working at cleaning it up again.  I am nothing if not incredibly spontaneous and thorough, so by "cleaning it up" I mean "completely overhauling it as of early last week."  Which is a shock to the system and pretty intense for the first couple of days, but now it's starting to feel normal to me again.  Which is good, because I feel good again.  I feel healthy, which is the goal.

I've been out walking with Nibbler a lot, and using my new camera (Happy Birthday to me!)  So far I've mostly shot in Auto, but I'm starting to play around with the settings a little bit.  And I have to say, I LOVE it!  I'm generally a Nikon girl (my DSLR is a Nikon, and all my other point and shoots have been Nikons,) but the Sony RX100 is ah-mazing!  I did try to stay with Nikon for this one, but after having the Coolpix S9700 for a week, I just could not make it work.  It is a good size, but the shooting capabilities are severely lacking.  There is no macro feature (which I actually use a lot) and the photos in low light were blurry, and super noisy since I had to jack up the ISO to make it bright enough to see anything.  Now, I'm not a professional photographer, so I'm certain that someone who knows more could probably make that camera work--it's nice enough.  But it just wasn't for me.  This Sony, on the other hand, makes my heart sing!  It's beautiful, heavy, feels nice in my hands, shoots BEAUTIFULLY in automatic, is easy to navigate, and fits well in my tiniest purses.  But, it's $500 (that was on sale--normally $600) compared to the $300 Nikon Coolpix, so of course you get what you pay for.

As an aside, I HATE spending that much money on myself.  BUT, this little camera makes me so happy!  I've had my DSLR for over six years, and I use it very often--I'd use it even more if it was just a smidge smaller.  I have lugged that thing through Europe, Mexico, and the States, and I think it will remain my favorite, but this "point and shoot" (really?!  It's like a tiny DSLR) is so much easier to haul around.  So far it's seen daily use, and I imagine it will be used all the time.  Plus, I'll have it for years provided it doesn't break.  So, overall the price--and myself--are worth it.

Anyway, we've been walking a lot.  We are lucky to live close enough to the Puget Sound that we can walk to it (though the walk home is really steep and not for the faint of heart--I had to carry my poor old girl the last two blocks up the hill!) And it's been super foggy, which I love taking photos in.

Also, just to keep myself accountable, I'm still on my weight loss journey--as of this morning, I've lost 65 pounds.  That's equivalent to my oldest child holding my fat pug.  I walk at least five days a week, and go to Zumba at least twice a week.  I can outrun my eight year-old, and go 23 miles on my bicycle in one day.  Yay me!

Sunday, January 11, 2015

A Little Behind, but Halloween!

Eamon: "Mommy, I don't want to be Toothless anymore."
Me: "Oh, why not?"
Eamon: "Because then everyone will stop me when we're out trick or treating."
Me: "Why would they do that?"
Eamon (fidgeting at this point:) "Well...because they'll want to know where I got my costume."
Me: "What's wrong with that?  Don't you like the costumes I make?"
Eamon: "YES!  I love the stuff make.  But I don't like having to tell people that."
Me (trying not to be all hurt by now:) "Oh.  Well ok, would you rather we bought your costume this year?"
Eamon: "NO!  I want you to make my costume.  I just don't want to have to explain to everyone that you made it.  You make them TOO GOOD and then that's all anyone wants to talk about."

So, about a month before Halloween, we ditched our plans to make Toothless and Stormfly, and switched to lesser-known but much beloved--in this house at least--Eli and Burpy.  At first, I had NO IDEA how I was going to make the slug, but then I stopped thinking too much (because they're just costumes) and drafted a plan.  I even made the dog a costume.  The boys LOVED them!  No one stopped them (because no one knows what Slugterra is.)

I, however, was stopped a lot.  (Princess Unikitty, anyone?)  I had people posing with me, and had a local blogger and a few random photographers taking pictures.  I have no clue where any of these photos are, but it was still fun.  Go big or go home, right?  (I might have picked up my kids in full costume.  Fluffy tail and all.  It was a big hit with the elementary set...)

This has become a pretty fun event for our whole family.  I think this may be the year we all--even the husband!--dress up!  Family costume 2015, baby!

FO: Superhero Robe and Hoot Sweater

For Christmas this year I made my niece and nephew a couple of presents.  My nephew is really into superheroes, so of course when I found some fleece full of them I had to make him something.  Bathrobes are simple (I made three this month.  I know.)  So, a bathrobe it was!  It's a Simplicity pattern (6847.)  This one is a size 5.

My niece needed something as well, and I love the Hoot pattern!  The owls are adorable, and the purple yarn is squishy and nice (it's a super wash acrylic since my sister likes to felt the things I make out of nice wool...ahem.)  It took a few hours (5-ish, I think.)  It's a very simple pattern, well-written with a few cables.  Nothing complicated.  I will say though that the proportions of the overall pattern seem a little off.  It's short in the body compared to the width.  I made a size 6 months, so it won't fit my niece for awhile yet.

I didn't make a ton of things for Christmas, but the few things I did make were fun and well-loved!  I also made my boys robes, which of course they haven't allowed me to take decent pictures of yet.  Hopefully soon so I can share!