Better with friends…

I am apparently drawn to greens... These were all purchased at different times.

I am apparently drawn to greens… These were all purchased at different times.

Crochet. We’ve been all talk for a while now. It started when a Stitch N’ Bitch group was sitting next to us at a Starbucks knitting and crocheting while catching up on each other’s lives. We felt like we were missing out on some of the fun. We felt completely unproductive during our own rant fest. That was a few years ago.

Who needs a hook? :)

Hooks, hooks, and more hooks! Where do I start?! 🙂

Yesterday, we finally got the ball rolling. I tried learning on my own with a book at first, but many times I have trouble figuring out exactly what is going on there. As I mentioned in a earlier post, I’ve started Craftyminx’s Crochet School on my own and I’m really enjoying it but I’ve been stuck at lesson 4, trying to master the single chain stitch. More than anything, I’m having issues with tension, and holding the yarn. Although, I’m learning this is hard for anyone to master at first, I also am working against a previous hand injury, where I slammed my hand in a bank vault door (and Workers Comp never covered therapy). So even though it means I might be struggling more, in a way, I’m doing my own physical therapy on my hand by teaching myself to do some of these motions I didn’t even know I wasn’t capable of doing. Crochet is looking pretty beneficial for me!

Yarn  + Play-doh therapy = my first stitches

Yarn + Play-doh therapy = my first stitches. Blurry shot, but how’d I do?

And now I have some of my girlfriends interested in tackling these lessons with me, which is super helpful because now we can not only learn so much from these videos individually, but also have each other for help if we need it. Last night was a fun night of slip knots, chain stitches, pizza and wine. We are hoping to get through lesson 5 on our own and read up on lesson 6 before our next meet up. I’m looking forward to regular crochet time with my girlfriends… we will see just how productive we will actually be. A little is still better than nothing, right? 🙂 Wish me/us luck!

Books, Books, and more Books…

I’ve mentioned before that I love to read. Growing up, I was the girl who walked with my nose in a book everywhere I went, that is, until I walked neck first into a diagonal electrical line. Lesson learned. Of course as a teen, when school and social activities got more intense, I cut back on the reading only to regret it years later. There are so many books I haven’t read yet! Over the last few years, I have been in reading challenges on Goodreads.com trying to lessen that gap, averaging at about 40 books a year. I realize I can never read ALL of them, but I enjoy trying.

This year, my husband says to me: “Christina, why don’t you just read what you want. Skip the reading challenges this year.” Sure, why not?! I can go through the books on my new bookshelves and finally read the ones on my TBR list that have been on it for years. (I’ve probably only read about 1-2% of these!)

2015-02-09 11.16.55

The thing is, I don’t know how to stick to a laid-back plan. Instead, as soon as some girlfriends mention starting a book club, I’m in! Then, because I don’t have to worry about meeting an intense challenge goal every month, I start browsing the giveaway sections. Next thing I know, I’ve won 4 more books, that I need to read ASAP. So much for the leisurely reading. I can’t help it, I love reading about reading, and how can you say no to a potentially good book, especially if you can have it for free in exchange for your honest opinion? I just can’t do it! So here is my reading line up so far this year:

Roman Fever by Edith Wharton – Read  ★ ★ ★ ★

The Story of an Hour by Kate Chopin – Read ★ ★ ★ ★

A & P: Lust in the Aisles by John Updike – Read ★ ★ ★

The Fault in Our Stars by John Green – Read ★ ★ ★ ★

Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn – Read ★ ★ ★

The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt – Currently Reading (Book Club – February Read)

The Evening Chorus by Helen Humphreys – TBR (Goodreads Giveaway win)

Finding Zero by Amir D. Aczel – TBR (LibraryThing Early Reviewers win)

The Dream Lover by Elizabeth Berg – TBR (Goodreads Giveaway win)

Rain by Cynthia Barnett – TBR (LibraryThing Early Reviewers win)

The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins – TBR (Book Club – April Read)

Are you reading anything good?