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Way Back When-esday

Cheryl over at Twinfatuation hosts this one. Go on over to see who else is playing – and join in too!

I ran across my crafting log the other day and thought “OH YA! I used to take a picture of everything I made! Why haven’t I done that recently??” So…I need to start hunting things down and start taking pictures again. (Alas, there are some that were gifts, so I’ll probably never get pictures of those…)

Anyway, these photos are from December 1993. I was a Sophomore at Clarkson University and I had just taught myself how to crochet! You get a two-for-the-price-of-one deal here…an old picture of me AND a picture of the sweater I made.

1993: Nancy and a Hand Made Crochet Sweater

Hand Made Crochet Sweater

(And now I’ve just confused myself because the date in the book says December 1993, but I remember when this picture was taken, and I’m fairly certain that that’s the common area of my dorms Junior year. Perhaps I finished the sweater in 1993, but took the picture later on. Way to take notes, Nance.)


One thing I’m always asked is how do I have enough time to <insert said thing>: read, blog, have a second job, crochet, volunteer…whatever.

The honest answer is: I don’t know. Perhaps we’ll all figure it out by the end of this post. 🙂

As you may know, I have a full-time job. Recently though, I’ve been working from home full time instead of the 2 days a week that I was doing. An instant 6 hours a week gained from travel time! Since I still have my nanny for the same number of hours…there’s time for my second job built right in.

My blog posts are written…whenever, actually. If I don’t have time, you’ll see some photos and a little blurb – usually sent as an email from my phone. If I have some time over lunch or after the kids go to bed, I’ll put together a longer post. This one? I’m actually hand-writing it on the back of a flyer while waiting for Burke’s art class to finish up. I’ll either type it up tonight after the kids go to bed and set it to post in the morning, or I’ll type it up tomorrow morning some time…and I’ll type it up word-for-word so I don’t have to THINK about it and it’ll only take a minute or two. There’s no way I’m typing all of this out on my phone! (Note: I’m actually typing this up this morning right before posting…)  READING my favorite blogs is different story. I do that here and there – some on my computer and some on my phone. All through my blog reader though. And I HATE that I don’t have enough time to comment on them all. (Know that I’m still reading though!!)

I tend to crochet in spurts. And those spurts tend to happen around when I need to finish up a project before giving it to someone (like a baby blanket). The spurts also usually happen in the car when we head to Vermont or while I’m watching TV after the kids have gone to bed.

Right now, almost all of the stuff I volunteer for is online with a meeting here and there….except for Sunday School. I figure I’m at church anyway, so I might as well help out, right? (Not next time!!) The PTO meets once a year and the rest is done through email. Since I’m in front of my computer all day anyway – that’s easy. Membership Chair for my Twins club is all done online as well, so… that’s easy too. And Fishful Thinking is mostly done online or chatting with another mom while I’m waiting for one of the kids’ classes to finish up.

Reading. I won’t ever give up reading! I have to admit that there are weeks when I don’t get enough sleep because I’m finishing up a book well after I should be asleep. But I also make sure that I build in time to read. I leave a little bit early to pick the kids up from school so I can park and read a chapter or so. The kids have a class? I bring a book (but I try to be social if there are other moms there!) Kids watching a TV show, but I haven’t seen them all day so I want to sit with them? I read a book with a kid on each side and one in my lap. (I think it’s important for my kids to see me read anyway. I know seeing my parents read books absolutely fostered my love of reading.)

I have to admit – having a nanny helps A LOT. I wouldn’t be able to leave a bit early to get the kids if Logan had to come with me. And I wouldn’t be able to sit in peace if the other two kids had to come with me to Burke’s drawing class or Maggie’s dance class.

I also have to admit that I leave some things undone around the house. Are all of the kids’ toys picked up every night? Nope. Are there dishes in the sink over night some nights? You bet. And I use my crock pot a lot so that I don’t have to spend too much time in the kitchen.

So…time. I multitask, plan, leave some things undone…and I’m incredibly lucky.

My New Diet Plan

I’ve come up with a new diet plan that will not only help me lose weight, but it might also keep me warm!

I figured out that I won’t eat if I’m crocheting. . . I don’t want to get my yarn all dirty, right? So perhaps if I make a rule that I *have* to crochet at night while watching TV (instead of snacking), I’ll shed some pounds! 🙂 And … since my favorite things to make are afghans…I’ll be keeping myself warm for the winter as well. Win – win!

AND, since I discovered the nifty new Crochet hook (wanna win one?), my hands aren’t cramping. Woot!

Do you think my diet fad will catch on?

A Shining Star in the Crochet World

I love to crochet. Before I had kids, I crocheted almost as much as I read books. (Hard to do both at the same time though…) I tried knitting, but I guess my brain can only follow one hook (or needle) at a time. 🙂

The other day, I had about an hour to kill between getting a throat culture and picking up the kids from school, so I hit the local craft store for some yarn. I found what I was looking for almost immediately, including a pattern! 50 minutes left to kill, so I figured I’d buy a hook as well so I could go ahead and start on my blanket. (Since I’m always in the middle of about 20 different projects, and I like keeping the right size hook with said project, I can never have too many…) Except…all of the size I needed were GONE. In every brand on the rack! Grrr.

So I wandered around a  bit looking at the end caps and a new hook caught my eye. THERE was the size I needed… only … it looks a little funny (and colorful!)

I picked it up and got excited…The Widget Crochet Lite has an acrylic (“normal”) hook, but it lights up! The handle has batteries and a switch…so it’s larger than normal, but it also has a “grippy” on it. And did I mention a light?? I can crochet in the DARK!!


Now, you’re thinking, “Why on Earth would you crochet in the dark??” right? I’ll tell you why… And it’s not just because my Great Granny Mac used to crochet at the movie theater (I still don’t know how she did that!) … it’s for all of those long trips we take to Vermont! I usually have to stop crocheting once I realize that I’ve been squinting for the past half hour and have to rip out the last row of stitches.

It’s PERFECT!! I used it on the way home one evening last week, and the light didn’t bother Mike while he was driving at all. Woot!

Oh – and an added (HUGE) bonus? Since the handle is about twice the size of a “normal” hook, my hand doesn’t cramp any more!! (Yes, I’m fully aware that I’m getting old. Shoosh. 😉 )

I think I’m in love. And I’m SO going back for more sizes.

Want one of your own? Leave me a comment with your favorite thing to crochet. (My favorite is afghans since they’re incredibly forgiving), and the size hook you use most often. A link to a favorite project (only if you can do it legally!) will get you another entry. Random.org will choose one winner in a week (so comment by Midnight, Monday, December 14th if you want a chance). I’ll announce the winner on Tuesday the 15th.

No one sent me this product to review, I bought it on my own…as I will buy the winner their own … in the size they want.

Way Back When-esday

Cheryl over at Twinfatuation hosts this one.

My mom is coming to visit for the weekend, so in honor of that, here are some pictures from 2007. She was letting Burke and Maggie help with the finishing touches on Logan’s new afghan (that’s “blanket” for all you non-crafty people 😉 ).

Whatcha Doin Granny Frani

Whatcha Doin' Granny Frani?

Can I Help

Can I Help?