新年快樂!

Lunar New Year is just around the corner, and I’ve got a little piggie ready to go!

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If you’ve got a copy of my book Literary Yarns, you can modify little Napoleon to be a festive little Lunar New Year piggie! Much friendlier and nicer than a ruthless dictator. 😉

Read on for directions on how to make this lucky little oinker!

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Thank you, 2018

Even though I’m a self-professed Christmas grump, I kind of like new year’s eve. If you’ve had a good year, it’s a good chance to look back and reflect on the good times that were had and to hope to continue the trend. If you’ve had a bad year, it’s a convenient time to give it the middle finger and tell the universe that you’re going to move on to bigger and better things. 2018 started out rough. I made the difficult decision to end my marriage, became an emotional wreck, isolated myself, had to learn to trust people all over again and most of all, had to learn to trust in myself all over again. I had to accept that sometimes you’ll put your all into something and it still won’t get you results, but at least you can walk away knowing you tried. I had to trust that even if shit goes down, life will go on, and guess what? It’ll all be okay. It’s all going to be okay, but it’ll only be okay if you make the effort to make it so.

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I gave myself time to grieve, time to wallow. Crocheting didn’t feel as fun anymore. I tried to fill my schedule with as many things as possible, anything, just to get away from the emptiness at home and the reminders of what was now gone, or reminders of things that I had found out too late were never there to begin with. Then things got better. I started rebuilding my home (in a figurative and literal sense), and slowly started rebuilding my life. My friends and family have been incredibly supportive and loving, and I started to take chances on myself. I’d try new things, some of them worked out, and some of them didn’t and that was all okay. It was all about figuring out what would work for me and what wouldn’t. Eventually I took the plunge to take my first solo trip to Portland, Oregon, and as a result it set off a series of amazing solo travel adventures in the months to come. I met new friends and reconnected with old ones. I developed better care habits for my health. I went to San Diego Comic-Con as I do every year, but I was feeling a bit anxious about going without the same people I’d been going with for all these years, but I quickly found a new tribe and we’ve all continued to hang out back home in Houston and have continued to get into nerdy hijinks ever since.

I’m finally growing back into my own skin after feeling myself fall away, and it feels pretty fucking good. 2018 started out rough, but it turned out to be the reset button that I never knew I needed, even if it meant going through a bumpy ride starting out. If you’ve had a great year, rock on. If you’ve had a shitty year, tonight’s your chance to tell 2018 to fuck off, things can and will be okay, but it’s all about what you make it out to be. Thank you, 2018, for kicking my ass and teaching me to grow. 2019, I can’t wait to see what you bring my way. Be good to each other, and happy new year to everyone out there. ❤️

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It’s that time of year.

UPDATE: As of 8/5/17, the pattern has been removed due to a DMCA takedown notice per Dr. Seuss Enterprises, L.P. Boooooo. 😦

Thanksgiving has come and gone, and now Christmas season is in full swing. I scowled when I saw Hobby Lobby putting up Christmas paraphernalia before Halloween even started. I just about ripped my car stereo out when our local soft-pop station started the 24-hour Christmas music a week earlier than their usual start date of Thanksgiving Day. I’m a certified Christmas Grinch, and for all the other Grinchy hookers out there, I present to you all again my little Grinch pattern:

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For those of us who need a little stink, stank, stunk for this season, here’s my free Grinch pattern again to add a little grump to your holiday season. Also: two years later, a ravelry user with an eagle eye noticed an error in my pattern! If you’re going to make a little Grinch, note the following:

Rows 7-9 of the Grinch’s body should be as follows:

Rows 7-8: Should be SC 24 around
Row 9: Should be [SC 2, dec 1] x6 (18 stitches)

Otherwise happy hooking to everyone out there! And to everyone who’s hooking up a storm for holiday gifts: godspeed, and may your giftees appreciate your carpal tunnel-inducing efforts.

Wanna make a Grinch? Now you can!

UPDATE: As of 8/5/17, the pattern has been removed due to a DMCA takedown notice per Dr. Seuss Enterprises, L.P. Boooooo. 😦

Christmas has come and gone, but that doesn’t mean there still isn’t a spirit of giving floating around. FOR BEHOLD! I HAVE A PATTERN FOR YOU ALL!

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Make a Grinch!

I wrote up a pattern, and then I went to create a Ravelry.com account, since that seems to be the popular place to post free patterns. And then I discovered that apparently I already had an account. I HAVE NO MEMORY OF THIS.

Whatever the case is, the pattern is uploaded and good to go here. Happy hookin’, everyone!

“Stink! Stank! Stunk!”

When it comes to holidays, Halloween and Thanksgiving reign supreme in my books. Free candy! Fun costumes! Stuffing yourself silly until you pass out! So when it comes to Christmas, I’m somewhat of a scrooge. It’s not that Christmas has been bad to me…I’ve had plenty of great Christmas mornings growing up, but I feel like Christmas as an adult becomes a different ballpark. And I feel like anyone who’s worked retail or customer service around this time of year knows that the holiday season tends to bring out the WORST in people. THE. WORST. Stir in having to hear Christmas music on loop for 10 hours a day, and well, it’s enough to turn anyone into a Grinch.

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The biggest Christmas grump of them all. Maybe adding some holiday cheer will make things better?

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No? Gosh you’re a mean one, Mr. Grinch!

The thing that I LOVE about “How the Grinch Stole Christmas” is how towards the end, even after the mean ol’ Grinch took everything Christmas-related away from the Whos down in Whoville, they still came out and sang with glee like nothing happened. To which the Grinch said:

“How could it be so?
It came without ribbons! It came without tags!
It came without packages, boxes, or bags!”

And he puzzled and puzzed, till his puzzler was sore.
Then the Grinch thought of something he hadn’t before!
“Maybe Christmas,” he thought, “doesn’t come from a store.
Maybe Christmas… perhaps… means a little bit more.”

Because Christmas ISN’T about the frantic shopping, the ridiculous “see how much more money you can spend than your neighbors” light displays, the songs that get incessantly drummed into your head, the parents shouting at their kids to smile for the camera while they’re crying uncontrollably in Santa’s lap – it’s about being with those you love and sharing a time of kindness and goodwill that frankly, should be happening every day of the year. And sometimes it takes a movie like How The Grinch Stole Christmas to reaffirm to real-life Grinches like me that amidst all the commercial craziness, no, Christmas doesn’t come from a store, and yes, it really does mean much, much more. Spend time with the ones you love, be kind to strangers in the street…celebrate until your heart grows 3 sizes too big. From a real-life Grinch, wherever you are, and whoever you’re with, may you all have a very merry Christmas!

Happy Thanksgiving!

Last night I came back from sandy beaches in Puerto Rico to cold, wet weather in Houston, and now I’m here in even colder and wetter weather in Atlanta. And I wouldn’t have it any other way.

This past weekend I got to see my best friend get married to the woman of his dreams, and now I get to surround myself with family and stuff myself silly. If that’s not a week packed full of things for me to be thankful for, I don’t know what is. Whether you celebrate Thanksgiving with a giant feast or with a quiet night with a bowl of instant noodles and time with your favorite loved ones, be thankful for all that you have in life, and have a happy and safe holiday!

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Gobble gobble!

HAPPY HALLOWEEN!!

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He lives in the shadows. He is the dark knight.

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And he’s the hero we deserve. But not the one we need right now…

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…because he kind of has a problem keeping track of his limbs.

Poor business zombie. Yet another Halloween mishap.

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Maybe next year, my undead little friend.

But hey, missing a limb has never stopped this guy from making SUPER awesome costumes year after year:

DAT LEG LAMP. Have a happy and safe Halloween tonight, everyone!