Archive for the ‘Family Love’ Category

All about…Kara

You guys know my sister right?

Well, for those that do and for those that don’t, here is a random, itemized list all about her:

  • Kara is 4 years my junior and pretty much idealized me while growing up (let’s be frank, I doubt this has changed much.)
  • We share A LOT of the same obsessions: travel, knitting, sewing, urban living, young adult literature, all things British.
  • I don’t really remember when this happened but at least post-High School graduation Kara has always been “the funny/clever/witty one”.
  • Kara has way better hair than I do (but my toes are better than hers so it all evens out.)
  • I once had a group of co-workers who labeled Kara “bad sister” because of the difference in how I talked to her on the phone as opposed to baby sister Bri (who was labeled: “good sister”.)
  • Kara is not (and has never been) a “bad sister”.
  • Kara is like a mama bear to her cubs when the people she loves are hurt or wronged. Lesson: don’t mess with Kara’s people.
  • Kara’s last passport got so full she needed to expand the pages.
  • Kara LOVED animals when she was a kid, so much so that she once declared herself a vegetarian but couldn’t make it stick due to a slight addiction to Chicken McNuggets.
  • Kara still loves herself some Chicken McNuggets.
  • And finally…today is Kara’s birthday!

Happy birthday to my beautiful, brave, creative, strong, adventuresome sister.  I am grateful every day that God saw fit to give you to me.  Love you Kara.

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Welcome Maggie

So my new niece Maggie arrived yesterday and last night I got to meet her in all her glory.  She is perfect.  Her mom (my sister) was such a trooper and managed to give birth and maintain perfectly coiffed hair (a newly discovered talent.)  Maggie’s birth has been a much anticipated event which was only heightened by the fact that Bri’s doctor told us it could happen about 3 weeks ago. So we have been waiting.  And waiting.

In the end though it was worth it.  I mean, how can you not love this face?

Meeting Maggie makes me want to quit my job and move in with Adam and Bri full time.  I wonder how much they’d pay for a nanny…?

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MS Walk Winner!

I am sorry it has taken me so long to get my act together and post the winner of the MS donation drawing I had.  First off though, I have to give a huge thank you to everyone that donated.  I know money is tight and there are so many good causes to support and I am just so grateful for your kindness and generosity.  I will do my best to pay it forward.

So onto the winner.  I wrote out all the names and drew one out of a hat and the winner is…


Jacey is a girl after my own heart who loves knitting, sewing, cooking…basically we are BFFs waiting to happen.  I don’t know Jacey in real life which makes her contribution that much more impressive.  Thank you Jacey.  (Jacey: I have an email in to you so please send me your address and I will send you your fun prize.)

As for the walk, Kara did a perfect job recapping the day and since she shared the same pictures I would have I’ll just send you here to check it out.

And for those who want an update on the “contest” between my sister and I…technically, Kara won by $20.  Although I would argue that by throwing the gauntlet down in the first place, I encouraged Kara to seek more donations and thus I feel I can take some credit for both our success.  🙂  Next year though…just you wait.

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You hear me talk a lot about my sisters on this blog and many are surprised when I mention I have an older brother.  Well I do.  And he is a great one.  Brett loves chocolate and Star Wars, cooking and laughing at Kara’s jokes.  He loves his family more than anything and has raised 3 of my favorite people on the planet.

Brett was diagnosed with MS about 4 years ago.  His body is dealing with the disease as best as it can.  It is rough because when you have MS you really don’t know how it will affect you.  Every day you deal with what you are given and how your body will function on that day.  I suspect one of the hardest parts to handle is your mind which is forced to think about the uncertainty of a future under the shadow of a potentially debilitating disease.  There is no cure for MS.  At least not yet.

My bro in the Cobblestone I knit for him.

My family and I are participating in the local MS Walk a week from Saturday and I am humbly asking for your support to a really great cause…and an opportunity to win a awesome prize in the process.  All money donated is used to find a cure and support families who live with the devastating effects of the disease. Obviously this is a no pressure situation.  We all have a lot of good causes to support and our own personal financial situations to deal with.  I will still love everyone who comes to my blog whether you donate or not–although I think we all know who I will love more.  kidding 🙂

$5, $20…any dollars helps.  So this is what I am going to do.  If you are kind enough to donate (and you can do so here)–any amount, no matter the size–please let me know either by email (girlwhoknits@gmail.com) or in the comments of this post by Thursday, April 22 at midnight (MST) and I will enter you into a drawing for a super fun prize package.  I will cater the prize to your interests so knitters, sewists, and non-crafty types are all covered and I promise you will love it.  This is not a bribe, merely something I want to do to thank those who are able to help a sister (and her brother) out.

Final plea: If the chance at winning a super awesome package or just simple altruistic giving doesn’t do it for you then maybe you will be motivated to help me earn bragging rights in my family?  I would LOVE to be the one that earned the most (and actually reached her fundraising goal.)  And let’s be honest, really I just want to beat Kara.  🙂

So please donate.  If you can.  Thanks.

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Meet Twinkles the Bear

So this past weekend Kara and I hosted our 6-year-old niece Ellie for a sleepover at my house.  Here is Ellie being officially welcomed via the vinyl chalkboard on my kitchen wall:

We picked up Ellie on Friday night, dined at Applebee’s, painted toe and finger nails, played the Fancy Nancy card game, made homemade mint chocolate chip ice cream shakes, watched the new Tinkerbell movie, and then all settled down for bed.  Come early Saturday morning, Ellie and I were watching cartoons and the thought came to me that perhaps it wasn’t the most exciting use of our time together.  I suggested a couple options for her to choose from (continue to watch TV, drawing pictures, perhaps a small sewing project) and she immediately jumped on the chance to sew.  We pulled out several sewing pattern books and started looking for the perfect pattern.  At first she was thinking she wanted a purse but then she saw a stuffed animal pattern and our search quickly narrowed.  Kara had joined us at this point and all three of us decided on this pattern:

The pattern is Peg Bear from One Yard Wonders.  Cute right?  Next step was picking fabric.  At first Ellie REALLY wanted the same fabric as the red polka dot Bear pictured in the pattern.  I actually happen to have that exact fabric in my stash but it is being saved for a particular project so I was hesitant to use it.  Luckily we found some other fabric in my stash that we all determined was even better.  Ellie was able to quickly see the vision of how cute the different fabric would be.  She is creative like that.

After a quick trip to JoAnn’s for some materials, we got started sewing in earnest.  Ellie helped with the pinning:

And the stuffing:

She had moments of pure happiness:

And even got a little stressed out:

In then end, it was all worth it for our work resulted in Ellie’s newest best friend, Twinkles:

I can’t remember the last time I had this much fun on a Saturday.  Ellie is a girl after her Aunts’ hearts as she kept exclaiming, “This is so fun” and “I LOVE this!”  Looks like the creating gene has bled to another generation.  We simply had a blast.  (The only damper on our day was knowing how much fun Ellie’s older sister Emma would have had if she too was with us.  Next time it is Emma’s turn.)

Ellie loves Twinkles for her perfectly hugable size, her adorable belly button and sparkly button eyes, and I hope partially because we created her together. We love you Twinkles.

Fun Fact: When Kara was little she used to have a pet bunny named Twinkles.  Ellie remembered the name and out of the blue decided to name her bear Twinkles in honor of her Aunt’s deceased pet.  She is a cute one that Ellie.

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*This title won’t make sense unless you are familiar with a certain commercial run in Hawaii in the late 80’s/early 90’s.  Points to anyone that can place it (no points to Kara though – I already know you know.)

So I made my first pie today. Actually, I made two.  (I am pretty much a pro now.)  I was most intimidated by the crust.  Not really sure what was so scary about it, but I was convinced it was going to be the hardest part.  I guess you could say I was right, but only because the rest of the pies were so easy to make.  So it was a little scary and I wasn’t sure I did it right but I am really quite pleased with how it turned out.  Want to see?

I am kind of in love with it.  So I made two pies, a pumpkin and an apple.  The end result didn’t look perfect by any means but they sure tasted yummy.

The other fun thing I got to do on Thanksgiving was wear this super cool turkey headband:


So my thanksgiving was great.  Lots of family and good food.  If nothing else however, my day of pie making opened up a whole new world of cooking that I hadn’t yet explored.  For that I thank you Thanksgiving.

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When I was growing up, if you had told my Mom I would someday immerse myself in knitting, sewing and other crafty pursuits, I am pretty sure she would have laughed in your face.  I didn’t just not do crafts, I actively disdained them.  I groaned every time I had to wait around at the fabric and craft supply stores.  When she would proudly show off a doll she just made I would shrug apathetically and hope she wasn’t giving it to me.  I just didn’t get it.  (Sorry Mom.)

But now, things are different.  I finally get it.  Now I long to go fabric shopping with my Mom.  (And she is going to start knitting just as soon as we can have her first lesson.)  I still don’t really want one of those dolls she used to make (remember family, the ones with the really long wood legs and HUGE curly hair) but I now totally respect the talent it takes to flawlessly create one.  I am so happy the gene that makes me want to make stuff finally kicked in and I am grateful to my Mom for passing it along.

So to my original crafter, mother of 4, powerful teacher, talented creator, expert bargain shopper, loyal friend, and heart of our family…thank you for my life, for your example, for your awesome genes, and for your unconditional love.  Happy Mother’s Day.

I love you lots and lots and lots.

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