Thursday, May 31, 2018

Self Care and Life Balance

Hi Friends,

I hope you are doing well. I have been busy with work, helping my sister with wedding plans as her Maid of Honor, and working on knitting projects and reading goals.

Lately I have been thinking more about self care  and creating a more positive routine for myself during the week and accomplishing more of what I would like to do. Last year I was at home, taking online courses, knitting, and blogging. Returning to work makes me think of purposefully taking time for self care and after having not worked full time in a few years, it requires more effort to get back into it. I have recently been reflecting on what self care practices I used then and now and have noticed lately that I am getting back into some of my older self care habits and tricks that help me to keep balanced. So I thought I would love to chat with you about them. Below are some things I have been up to lately to take care of myself and to learn and grow and to be my best self.

Listening to audio books:  I have really been looking into reading and listening to more books on personality, goals, and self care. I have been thinking that going back to work has brought back a need for me time and reflection in the evenings and mornings. I listened to a wonderful audiobook called What the Most Successful People Do Before Breakfast: A Short Guide to Making Over Your Mornings and Life by Laura Vanderkam. I took this book out from the online library because I have been thinking more about morning routines and how it is so important to starting your day off right. Through reading this book, I learned that mornings can be such an important time of the day for many people to get in their exercise, reading, journaling, spiritual practices, professional development and more.  I love my mornings before work because as I prepare my breakfast and meals for the day, I think about the day ahead as I sip my coffee and mentally prepare myself. I have been thinking of ways be more productive and to make the most of my mornings before work. I listened to this audiobook on my drive to work and realized that would be a great time to learn new things and to prepare for the day on my drive. In the audiobook, the author suggests to write a time log for a week to see how you use your time and ways you can be more productive. I would love to also do that. I would love to read and knit more because that is a big priority for me and to also make more time to blog. I will be incorporating more of these into my morning routine.

Reading: I finished reading the book Reading People by Anne Bogel and enjoyed learning about the personality tests you can take to learn more about your personality. I think this book would be more helpful for someone who has taken these tests before and can learn more about your type. But I also thought for someone like me with some knowledge of personality types, it provided me with more information on the tests you can do and it kept my interest. It also made me want to take one of the tests by a professional as suggested in the book. So reading has been helping me keep my balance and providing me with some more information on different personalities and that we are not all the same and to accept others for who they are and to accept yourself for who you are. I like to learn and also grow in my awareness of myself, my abilities, and also weaknesses. Reading books like these have been helping me to look inwards and to understand myself and others more.

Watching YouTube videos about self care: Like blogging, vlogs can offer a window into the lives of others and you can learn so many new tips and tricks from what works for them. I like to see what others do for their self care routines and they inspire me to really think about how I treat myself each day and how I can be better. Rowena Tsai has a wonderful YouTube channel and she posts videos on self care and talks about self care frequently. I stumbled onto her channel when I was browsing trending videos on YouTube one night and so glad I did because she inspires me to take my time to care for myself and to be more positive. I am sure there are so many other vloggers to discover too that promote self care and motivate us to be our best selves.

Reading affirmations: I have also been reading affirmations some mornings to help me start the day off right and positive. One that I have been reading for the past couple weeks (when I remember) is "Today is a gift and I am blessed to be here. Today will be a positive day". I got this affirmation off Pinterest one day and it was pinned from Louise Hudson's blog. She has a lot of other wonderful affirmations to start or end your day positively. Starting my day with an affirmation like the one below will remind me to be true to myself, support myself and be kinder to myself.

An affirmation to to promote self love. Photo source

Knitting: I had to include my favorite hobby in this list because knitting has always helped me to relax, set goals, and be positive. It allows me to focus my mind on the task and to also feel accomplished when I finished a project and learn something new. I knit at night while watching TV or YouTube videos or just simply with my thoughts.

And being with my cats is always nice

Some things I would like to work on and work back into my routine are: writing monthly goals, writing in a journal, and exercising regularly.

Please let me know in the comments below how you keep balanced and when you feel a bit off or need to connect with yourself what are some things that you do. I will be posting soon on my progress on my current knitting projects and reading.

Hope you have a great day!

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

New Knitting Project Plans, Knitting Progress, and Reading On

Hello Friends,

I hope you are doing well. I have been well, I bought some new yarn recently and I found a pattern for the socks that I will knit with it. I found the pattern for Decadent Socks by Janice Kuykendall on Ravelry. I am loving the design and really want to push myself to try patterns with more details. I have knitted a lot of vanilla socks now, so it is time for something a bit more challenging. I will be using Patons Kroy Socks yarn in the colorway "tourmaline stripes". I love the gray, blue, and purple in the yarn and will make the socks so fun and interesting to look at.

I had a wonderful long weekend and spent it with my boyfriend just hanging out and going to Evergreen Brickworks. Brickworks was such a wonderful place to go this weekend to welcome the warmer weather and a great day trip. We went for a walk around the park area, looked for turtles, walked up to the lookout point, shopped in the store, and walked through the local artisan market that was going on. We had a great day!

Lots of turtles and fish in the ponds

Toronto skyline

I have made some progress on knitting the Wool and the Gang Farrah Billie Jean Top. I have reached the part of the back piece where I begin shaping the armholes. I casted off 3 stitches on both sides and will then work on knitting the straps.

Almost finished!

I have been reading both Commonwealth by Ann Patchett and Reading People by Anne Bogel.  I am so intrigued by the Cousins and Keating families in Commonwealth and can't wait to see what they get up to next. It is so interesting to read about their lives and their history together. It is a real page turner. Reading People is also a real page turner and I love to pick this one up and read some pages quickly. It is so fascinating to read about the personality types and also to read that by finding out the personality types of others and ourselves, we can accept and appreciate other's qualities. I am looking forward to reading more of both these books this week.

Joining along with Frontier Dreams for Crafting On and As Kat Knits for Unraveled Wednesday.

Thank you for stopping by today! I hope that you have a great week and talk to you soon.

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Knitting the Back Piece and Reading On

Hello Friends,

I hope you are doing well. I hope that you had a wonderful weekend and Mother's Day. I spent most of the weekend with my family. We went out for dinner Saturday night to a lovely Italian restaurant, then I spent the whole day shopping with my mom and sister on Sunday.

This week I made more progress on the Wool and the Gang Farrah Billie Jean top to share with you. I am getting closer to finishing the back piece. I am more than half way done knitting the piece and I hope to be done soon to begin sewing the pieces together. I also purchased a couple skeins of Patons Kroy Socks yarn and looking forward to getting started knitting some socks next week.

I am still reading Commonwealth by Ann Patchett and really enjoying it so far. I recently started reading a book on Overdrive (online library) called Reading People by Anne Bogel. I am really finding the book interesting. Reading People focuses on understanding your own personality and temperament and of those around you. I decided to start reading this book because I have always been interested in personality types and I really enjoy learning more about myself as well and would like to learn more about how to develop my own strengths.

Photo source 
Joining along with Frontier Dreams for Crafting On and As Kat Knits for Unraveled Wednesday.

Hope you have a great day and thank you for visiting!

Saturday, May 5, 2018

The Storm Has Passed, Knitting, and Reading Updates

Hello Friends,

I hope you are doing well. Last night it was so windy on my drive home and my car was swaying. I saw a lot of fallen branches and saw a sign had fallen on a major street and blocked one lane. My boyfriend and I had a pizza night and stayed in and we were a bit worried about losing power because his mom had earlier and we had lost power the night before for about 20 minutes. This morning however, was beautiful- warm and sunny. I went for a walk to a nearby park and enjoyed the sunshine on my face and the nice, warm air. There were a few fallen trees in the wooded area of the park that I stepped around and I saw a couple hop over the trunk as if it were just a hurdle along the way. It was also nice to get out and walk because I am trying to get more exercise and lose some weight for the Summer. It will be easier to go for walks now with the weather getting warmer.

Tree fallen down 
Sad when tall, old trees fall down

I have not made a lot of progress on the Wool and the Gang top. A few rows here and there this week. I will be making more of an effort this week to finish the back piece.  I am also thinking of starting a new project soon, maybe some socks they are so fun to knit.

I have been continuing to read Commonwealth by Ann Patchett and really liking the story line so far. This morning I read a lot of it and caught up on my reading. I like Ann's style of writing and she develops the characters so well and you feel as if you know them and their motives. I also like how the focus is on one character at a time.

I also wanted to share how long my philodendron has grown. This started out as a clipping from my mom's plant and then once it rooted in water, she planted it in this pot in soil as a gift for me. I might try to do the clipping of this one and gift it as well to a friend.

Thank you for stopping by today and I hope that you enjoy your Saturday!

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