Books I Read in 2018

I love reading books its been an all-time favorite thing of mine since I was in 3rd grade. The only problem is since my daughter was born 5 years ago I haven't been reading as much as I would like. This year I tried to find more time for me to read and do things I enjoy. I didn't get to read as many books as I would have liked but I think I made a good effort to push myself to read more often.

The Selection - Kiera Cass

The Elite - Kiera Cass

Interview with the Vampire - Anne Rice

The Vampire Lestat - Anne Rice

The Queen of the Damned - Anne Rice

A Kiss of Shadows - Laurell K. Hamilton

First Grave on the Right - Darynda Jones

Second Grave on the Left - Darynda Jones

Third Grave Dead Ahead - Darynda Jones

Cinder - Marissa Meyer

The Color Purple - Alice Walker

Into the Woods: Tales from the Hollows and Beyond - Kim Harrison

The Demon Lover - Carol Goodman

His Immortal Embrace - Hannah Howell

They were all pretty good books and some I had even read before and wanted to read again to help get myself back into the swing of things. I'm planning on making a list of books I want to read in 2019 to help motivate me to read more and get those things crossed off my to read list.
I'll gladly take any book recommendations if anyone has any. The goal is to read 100 books by the end of 2019!

My First Craft

I have always been fascinated by all of the crafts and things my grandmother had done in her life. I never got to see her do any of them sadly because she passed away when I was 4 years old but, growing up i was very familiar with her work. We had had needlepoint she had done framed and hanging up, I have a blanket she had made and Halloween costumes she had sewn were still around and occasionally worn. I wanted to make great things like she did but I didn't know how she did them or even how to start learning.
 I was about 7 and my grandpa had a girlfriend who I absolutely adored she was sweet and kind and she did crafts. I distinctly remember she used to do cross stitch and sew I was familiar with cross stitch because we had a lot of my grandmothers cross stitch creations all over the house, but I had never seen it done in person. I was in love with it. I loved watching her work on her cross stitch in church when she didn't bring me little sticker books to help keep me quiet since I hated going to church. 
That Christmas she came with my grandfather to the house. we were all anxious for them to arrive since we weren't allowed to touch any presents until they both got there. They didn't arrive too late but to children, every moment not allowed to touch our gifts was absolute agony. we had our lunch then were finally allowed to rip into our gifts. I don't remember what all I got that year that I'm sure my mom spent hours fussing over trying to find all of us the perfect gifts. The only present I do remember getting was from my grandfather's girlfriend.
She had noticed my interest in cross stitch and got me my very first craft. A little cross stitch for beginners kit I don't even remember what the kit was exactly maybe it was a frog, but I remember her sitting with me for the rest of Christmas helping me to learn how to cross stitch. it changed my life from that moment on I loved to cross stitch and crafting in general. It sent me on the path I am on now and I don't know what I would have done with my life if she hadn't gotten me that gift. Maybe I would have found crafting on my own but probably at a much later date in my life. I'll never know, her and my grandfather broke up not long after that and I haven't seen her since. I really hope she knows how much of an impact that one little thing had on my life and how much I treasure that memory.
I no longer have that craft I wish I had the forethought to keep it.

After Chirstmas Yarn Shopping


so I don't get out to go yarn shopping a lot most of the yarn I get is from other people who gift it to me and I've ended up with an impressive collection from that. over last winter I gave myself the challenge to completely use up my whole yarn collection it took till fall but I have used all of my yarn it was exceptionally hard since I did keep getting new yarn but now finally everything is gone and the projects stashed away till I can find someone to give them to.

since it's after Christmas and I had gotten a gift card for joanns fabric I figured a trip to the store to hunt for yarn was in order. I don't know about other people but I personally never go into the store with a set project in mind I just hunt for yarn I like and build from there. I can spend minutes to hours searching the yarn isles touching and evaluating different yarns till i settle on some.

what I ended up walking out of the store with I was very happy about and I'm already thinking of a few different projects I can do with them.
3 Sugar'n cream cotton yarn
I LOVE Sugar'n cream yarn, since I used up my giant cone of it I've been looking at getting more but didn't want to commit to one color. For now, I got 3 different colors with the help of my boyfriend we picked Emerald Isle Overcast and Red I think these will make some lovely dish rags and I can't wait to get started on them.
Premier Sweet Roll
I've been eying a yarn like this for a while so I couldn't resist getting two of them I got the colors Black Peper Swirl and Grape Swirl. I have no idea what I'm going to do with them yet but I'm looking forward to working with the yarn.
Lion Brand Scarfie
when I saw these two I couldn't help but snatch them up. My favorite color is purple and my boyfriends favorite color is red so I grabbed them happily. The label has a scarf pattern on it and they make a full scarf with one skein so its a perfect thing for me to whip up quickly without having to think about it too much. 
This is only a small but of all the shopping we did today but its the one I'm most excited about. We also picked up the Fallout the Vault Dwellers Official Cookbook and I am already planning on a few of the recipes to try, I'm most looking forward to trying the Nuka-Cola recipe.

Spinning Dog Fur

I recently started my spinning journey and so far I love it (you can read my first post about it here ) and am having an amazing time with it. 
Recently I was hanging out at my friend's house and I made a comment that her dog's fur would probably be perfect to spin since she has a husky who has very long fur.
She immediately agreed so we busted out the dog brush and went to work. Now her husky is very vocal and was not happy that we suddenly were all over him with brushes. He loudly protested the brushing and let up know he did not want to be brushed at the time. We didn't get very far but we did get a decent amount of fur off of him. 
I took it home and washed it, it did smell a little bit but being through the wet dog smell went away. I got as much of the water out of it as I could and set it out on paper towels to dry for a while. 
Once it was dried I realized I forgot that usually, people use carders to brush out the fiber. I don't have any yet but always confident in my improvising abilities I took a regular comb to it fluffing it out a bit and sat down on my recliner with the large ball of fluff to see what I can do.
My first try didn't turn out too well I was trying to spin to thick and it didn't want to agree with me. I scrapped it and decided to start again this time spinning much thinner than I originally did and it worked amazingly!
 
It took a little trial and error but I finally figured it all out and spun the whole batch of fur pretty quickly. In under a day, everything was gone and now I have no more spinning fiber.
I have a friend who grooms dogs for a living I showed her the finished spool of spun dog yarn and she offered to give me as much dog hair as I can handle so I don't think I'll be short on fiber any time soon.
This was the most ambitious thing I've done with spinning so far especially considering this is only the second thing I've tried spinning I think it went pretty well and motivates me to spin even more.
I crocheted all the yarn and the little swatch ended up looking amazing its super soft and doesn't smell like dog at all I absolutely love it and want to work with dog hair much more in the future.

My Drop Spindle Adventure Begins

 I posted a while about drop spinning a little while about you can read the post here 

My spinning supplies finally came in the mail while I was out of town it was waiting for me when I finally got back from vacation I couldn't wait to get home and get my hands on this and start learning. the spindle is simple and lovely I ended up carving two notches on either side of it to help hold the yarn since the yarn kept slipping it wasn't terrible just slightly annoying and easily fixable. The wool that came with it was soft and amazing to work with. Along with the wool I bought the seller included a sample of alpaca wool that makes me want to buy a bunch of it to spin
using the park and draft method I caught on pretty fast and completely blew through my 2oz of top fiber it only took me 3 days to finish it off and right from the start I knew I was completely hooked. For my first try spinning with a drop spindle, I think it turned out pretty well. obviously, it's not perfect in any way I need to work on keeping the thickness more consistent and eventually I want to learn how to ply. I have a lot more learning to do but this is another craft I can see myself doing for the rest of my life. it's nice and relaxing and incredibly satisfying to watch the yarn build up on the spindle.
Id love to get a spinning wheel eventually that will be my next big goal once I get better with the drop spindle. I don't want to drop money on that big of an investment until I build up a decent talent working with fiber in general.
I'm already on the hunt for more fiber and will be enlisting the help of my friend who tie-dyes shirts to help me dye the yarn I spin. (if you are interested in checking out her work her link is here I highly recommend her work) Shes wonderfully talented and I can't wait to get to work with her on future projects


Etsy shop I bought my drop spindle kit from