Thursday, July 20, 2017

Lots of knitting, lots of dogs, & lots of texts {Thankful Thursday #134}

Image result for thankful thursday knit by god's hand

This week I am Thankful For:
{Numbers go with my One Thousand Gifts Journal / just ignore}

470 / AC in my car.
I cant even imagine sitting in a car, in this heat, in traffic. I think I have thanked God multiple times this awful heat infested week for my AC on my drive home from work.

471 / Knitting lessons.
One of the MSM leaders that teaches in first service came up to me last week & said, 'I heard you knit....." that's all it took for me to get really interested in the conversation.  She said her daughter had learned how to knit & hadnt done it in awhile & needed a refresher lesson, would I mind?  WOULD I MIND?  Love to share the love of knitting. & do you know her daughter is like 7 years old?.... & did AMAZINGLY well at knitting.  I was really impressed. Start 'em young!

Perfect yarn for a 7 year old knitter

472 / Doctor giving time.
I know most doctors are in & out at appointments but I love getting the first appointment of the day before they are rushed.  My last appointment, do you know she spent over 30 minutes with me.  Isn't that incredible?  I'm sure she was off schedule the rest of the day. haha. (Always get that first appointment of the day or the first one after lunch time or the last one of the day!!!)

Also thankful for knitting while waiting anxiously in a doctor's office

473 / This as my view when I woke up on Saturday.

475 / Bruno so good at us taking care of him.
He is just the most patient little guy when it comes to all the baths he has to have for his skin allergies & I try to keep his hair trimmed up - he'll sit there & let me do anything to him.  His grumpy ways have eased up on him since he's lost his vision. Poor baby.

476 / Sitting outside reading on a lazy day.
Does it get any better than that?  Seriously... no. it doesnt.

481 / Joyster meet up.
I really enjoyed having it in this coffee shop since there were just a few of us & daddy's kept the babies so all the mommas could get some free time.  We had a corner of the shop & it was just great to hang out, drink some fantastic drinks & really share what's going on in each others lives lately.

482 / MSM Text (#1)
I got a text from one of the girls in my group that rarely speaks up or talks in our small group.  I actually didnt even know she had my number.  & she text me asking for some advice & help in a situation. I was so thankful she asked me... & she really did hear what I suggested to her too.   She looked up some bible verses with me & we just had the best "God-text" going on... love that.

484 / MSM Text (#2 & #3)
These girls have just been touching my heart lately.  I got a text earlier in the week from this precious girl telling me how much she's missed me & our small group! love that... & then she sent me this message the other day.  How do I refuse this? ... she's sent me the 2 scriptures that she wants on her binders for school. I cant wait to work on them this weekend for her.

485 / Ricky stopping for dog food.... & momma food
Now that Bruno's food has to be monitored & I'm reading dog food labels like I'm reading my own in a health food store, we have to be really particular what we feed him. So it wasn't smart when we got down to the empty bag & needed to rush out after work to get him some more.  Only, the dog food store closest to us (still 15 minutes away one direction) didn't have it. UGHHHHH - NOOOO... but God love Ricky & his fur baby loving heart. After being so exhausted after work, he still drove to the place we originally got the dog food (30 minutes away one direction) to make sure Bruno had the food he needed so his skin wouldn't get bad again. How sweet of a fur-daddy is he?... & to top it off, he picked up dinner so I didnt have to worry about cooking.

Image result for applause gif

What's something good in your world this week?

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Questions on all things Etsy, Instagram, promotion, blah blah blah... Girl Boss I am not

I'm needing some opinions & thoughts...

So this big old world of the interwebs has the neatest & coolest ways to connect to people, share your creativity & enables you to just tap into areas you never knew you had inside of you.

I'm not even sure where to start here.

OK, about a year & a half ago, I opened up my Etsy store...

Image result for rebecca jo knits etsy

I was really happy with the the sales I did. I mean, I am the person who is going to knit regardless anyways.  I have a ton of stuff sitting in totes for my own sake of wearing... at least this lessens the chances of me making my husband wear knitted things that he'd rather not wear.

But I've also recently tapped into another skill that I've been really trying to perfect & work hard at... plus, its just relaxing to me.

Hand lettering.

I know I've mentioned it on here before, showing some of my things I've made, some of the things I've doodled with.  

It's become something that I just love to do as another outlet.

Here's my issue/question.

I've been making all my latest designs on some nice quality paper, in difference sizes & really wanted to put them in my Etsy store... for a decent price... Like $3.50 for 5x7 ...& $5.00 for 8x10 sizes. 

Unique pieces of art that can be framed & put in your home...

Fun, right?

But Rebecca Jo Knits.... that name was created with the idea that I'm a knitter.

So do you think its OK to put my hand lettering things in this same store... or do I need to change my name?

& if so, to what?

It's funny because when I created all my social media pages, I created Rebecca Jo Knits as everything because of this blog - a little tie into "Knit by God's Hand"... My main thinking, God created me (hence the name of the blog - & hello, Biblical reference) & then I figured I knit & created things so I just always stuck with that name for my twitter & Instagram.

Would the name Rebecca Jo Creations or something like Belle Crafts work for an Etsy store?
It would be fun to make something with Belle in it - even though nothing I have is Beauty & the Beast created... 
ugh... see.. this is hard.

& then would I need to change all my social media handles?

& that's a whole OTHER issue...

I see these beautiful Instagram accounts that are created solely for their one nitch.

A knitting Instagram account

A hand lettering instagram account

I almost created a Etsy store account so I could highlight all the things I'm creating... but then I wasn't sure I wanted to deal with 2 account - or 3 ... or 4?

Do I keep the knitting stuff separate... the hand lettering separate?  ... dont even get me started on wondering if I should keep my photography stuff separate.... mercy - ALL THE THINGS.

& then its like, do I keep running & vegetarian & fitness & church stuff separate.

I didn't know where the line was to draw so I've just left everything on my same account. 
No wonder I'm nearing 6,000 pictures on there.

But I know when people go to look for things on Etsy, they look at the account's main page & if its not all pleasing to the eye, does it turn people away from visiting my Etsy page.

Geez.... Girl Boss I am not.

Image result for no girl boss
 I just dont get all the promotion of social media & how to use it.

I just feel like I'm me.
.. I do knit... I do hand letter... I do create things .....I do run... I do eat vegetarian... I do love my dogs... I do love church..  it's all my life.  

So tell me - seriously - give me honest thoughts & opinions....

when you see someone's IG account, do you see or care if things are all booked together on one page - or are you drawn to the pretty staged artsy ones for products?

& what do you think I should do about my Etsy name?

Or do you even think my hand lettering art work is worth even trying to sale?

Help a girl out... 

I'll just be in the corner knitting until someone gives me some answers.

Image result for knitting gif

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Fitness & Hormones are not a match made in heaven....

So this past week was a blow to my mental state in fitness...

Let me say first, I feel like I have been doing really well lately at getting my work outs back in - 

working out 5 or 6 days a week, watching what I'm eating & making better choices. Even making dinners healthier for both the hubs & I...

I am so addicted to watermelon on salads right now

& then I had an appointment with my doctor this past week.

Well, actually, this was a follow up.  I had to go back after a few weeks to get some blood drawn to check how some basic levels were doing.  Vitamin D (AWFUL... shouldnt be below 50 & mine is 13)... Vitamin B12 (not supposed to be below 300 or 400?... mine was like 250)... but my thyroid & blood sugar levels were all good.  So there's that.

But I've been having some weird things happening to my body lately.  

Brain fog
Weird burning/tingling on my skin
Neuropathy coming back

& while a lot of that can be attributed to the low vitamin levels, the doctor told me that one big part was probably due to my progesterone & estrodiol levels were basically at zero.  ZERO.  

& another factor that she said with levels being at zero, could also cause my other issue....

I had gained 11 lbs in the past 6 weeks.... 11 POUNDS..... in 6 WEEKS!!!!!!

Image result for oh sweet jesus gif

Image result for noooo gif

When the doctor told me my weight, I may have said a bad word.  
& then thought another 20 in my head.

Image result for shocked gif

I know how hard it is to get off 11 lbs - how in the world did I gain it back in 6 weeks when I'm working out & eating a good healthy diet?

I mean, one of those weeks, I spent at camp eating virtually nothing & walking 8-10 miles a day....

& I'm putting this out there totally sick about it. Embarrassed even.  But I know this is something not of my own doing. It's not like I'm sitting at home, stuffing my face full of chocolate & not moving or working out....

Image result for matilda chocolate cake gif
As what would it seem like - this is NOT me

I guess hormones are more of a witch than I thought they ever could be.

So my doctor gave me the low down on taking hormones... & honestly, I love my doctor, but I think she thought she was giving a lecture to an audience of future doctors because about 5 minutes in, I had no clue what she was talking about....

... but I did pick up parts where she recommended making a cream that would have to be specially made to balance the progesterone & estrogen to work for me & because its not a full estrogen based pill, it shouldnt cause the chances of all the scary cancers that estrogen can raise the odds of getting.

... I think... 

I'm not doctor.. & again, I was too busy cursing in my head about 11 lbs to hear what she was saying.

But... my prescription has been sent to the compound pharmacy & now I have to figure out if I want to take it.

Do I want to get energy back?  Yes
Do I want my skin to stop itching?  Yes
Do I want to make this insane, ridiculous, weight gain stop? DO YOU HAVE TO ASK?

But I dont know about this stuff.

Image result for hormones funny menopause
The fact I'm using a Maxine meme is proof that I'm dealing in another age bracket here

... & I hate that its not something a lot of people talk about.

I mean, I know there are commercials about periods & videos about all the latest period products... but I dont hear anyone talking about menopause... except for maybe a commercial with someone who looks like she's 80 & having a heat stroke (Oh God help me - I dont have the hot flashes yet)

Someone... give me the low down...

I need one of those "What to expect when you are expecting" books but one that is like "What to expect when you are NOT expecting ever again"

I look online for info, but you know you can find both sides to everything on the internet.  
I dont know what's safe & what's not when it comes to hormones.

& I have a friend that does the bio-identical hormone replacement & she loves it & it has helped her so much. Is that the same thing?  Different from a prescription cream from the doctor?

I have no clue what I'm dealing with.

I actually just bought some natural pills that are for adrenals & I've been reading where adrenals work with progesterone...I think...I'm trying to look at more of this information about that.  Wonder if it will help in a more natural way?  I HAVE NO CLUE... 

Lord knows I need all the help I can get with energy & stress-levels

I just hate feeling so out of control of my body right now.

It's like Bizarro World. 

Anyone else ever watch Seinfeld & when they each met someone who was the opposite of them?
Did I just date myself talking about Seinfield? ... maybe its why I'm perimenopausal & heading into menopause - I really may be that old.

Image result for seinfeld bizarro world
still the funniest tv show ever

But its like I eat healthy & work out & its bizarro world so I'm going to have less energy & gain weight.  Only explanation.

... its tough being a girl...

I'm going to keep at it. I'm even starting a new half marathon training program today.

I know... I know... another running program?  I dont even know if I'm going to run the one I'm training for. It's over $90.00 to register.   That's CRAZYYYYYYY.

Unless there's a groupon, I wont be doing it - but I figure the training aint gonna hurt, right?

Let's just hope that my next Training Tuesday post, I'm not up another 11 lbs.

If so... I'm moving to Alaska so I can just cover up in layers & keep my own blubber as protection.

Image result for training tuesday knit by gods hand

Monday, July 17, 2017

The weekend I forgot how nice it was to finally breathe....


a weekend where I took it easy.  A slow, relaxing, no schedule, no need to be anywhere weekend.

I think I forgot how amazing these weekends are. 
& now I want more.

Friday, kicked off with a grocery trip - where I had a "Jesus Debate" with a guy trying to sell me our local newspaper. I told him I didn't need it & good luck on selling some.... to which he stopped me & in his best preaching tone, said, "You're a Jesus believer, right?" (I had on a Christian t-shirt) & & I assured him I was - to which he went on to lecture me about if I was a real Jesus believer, I would never wish someone luck & then went into a long discussion on why & where the Bible refers to that. Ok guy... take a breath....

but then he went on & was telling me some bizarre things that he believed the Bible told him in his studies & finally I just knew there was not going to be any discussion here.  He was very VERY intense on his opinions - at one point, I interrupted him & said, "Are you a Baptist preacher?"... just to get a laugh - & no offense to any Baptist. I was raised Baptist - but Baptist preachers are VERY hell & fire sort of sermons & this is the kind of intensity this guy was coming at me with.... 

Finally, I just had to tell him, "I have Jesus... I'm good.  No matter where that's at, as long as I'm with Jesus, it can be anywhere in this universe"... he didnt know how to respond. He came at me with another attacking thing about how the devil is taking us all down sinful roads every day & how much of a sinner I am (... I wanted to say, You are too dude....) & my response?  "I have Jesus... I'm good"... I finally learned that I was going to be banging my head against the wall to discuss anything with him on what I believe against what he was telling me... so I just started repeating to everything he said, "I have Jesus... I'm good!"... he was getting so aggravated but finally just broke & laughed at me & wished me well as I told him "I hope you sell papers & I'm NOT wishing you luck on that" ;) it was a crazy conversation to say the least - & took about 30 minutes of my time in the grocery. UGH.

I treated myself after that conversation with the new Strawberry Green Tea from Starbucks... a total thumbs up!!

doesnt every one need at least 3 rubber bands on their wrist for hair emergencies?

But my Friday night was spent finishing up editing my latest session & watching the movie The 5th Wave

The 5th Wave...OMIGOODNESS!!!!! I read this book and loved it! cant wait to watch it!

Isn't that a book?  I have to say, I wasn't too impressed with the movie.  Dumb really .. & that ending? Do they really expect to make another one? Glad I didn't pay for that in the theater.

Saturday had me up feeling the BEAUTIFUL day.  The humidity gave us a break & I was all about it - especially since I didn't have any plans on my schedule.

I took some time to work on my Bible Journaling...

& then made some iced coffee & then did some house cleaning.

I've learned that cleaning my house is something that can happen when I'm not running to a dozen places in a day... who knew?

& I even got in a work out!  GO ME!

It was time to really take advantage of a carefree day & no schedule & cooler air by going outside & reading with another cup of iced coffee... & my little shadow, Harvey Dent.

I enjoyed every minute of it... because it wasn't long before the hubs came out with his lawn mower making me move... that's ok though. It made me go in the enclosed room where I wasn't slapping my legs every 5 minutes from bug bites...

& then when he was finished, he took advantage of the nice day to ... & then Harvey Dent wanted to be involved in the family love.

I spy my iced coffee & Kindle by my reading chair

Ricky needed to run down to Home Depot & I told him I'd go - which he said he didnt know how it felt to go somewhere with me on a Saturday since I'm never home (funny guy) & he even let me run into Target to pick up some mason jars. I'm on a total mason jar salad kick right now... even meal prepped for it during the day.   AGAIN - the things I can do on a free day - SHOCKING!!!!

But I took the drive with him but couldn't make myself go into Home Depot - but I'm a smart girl... I took my knitting with me so I entertained myself while he was in there.

We got home & I took a shower early & then gave Bruno a bath (his skin is SO MUCH BETTER) & then I splurged with another movie for the weekend...

From Walt Disney Animation Studios comes “Moana,” a sweeping, CG-animated feature film about an adventurous teenager who sails out on a daring mission to save her people. “Moana” sails into U.S. theaters on Nov. 23, 2016.

FINALLY... I cant believe I hadn't seen it yet... & loved it.  It's so sweet.. & funny.  I want to watch it again just to take it all in & learn the songs.

I ended up knocking out SO EARLY on Saturday... like 10pm... I am officially old. I remember those days when at 10pm, we were just gearing to head out & meet up with friends. WOW.

... I'm glad I went to bed early though because I was out walking in wet grass in my yard 3 times during the night with Bruno. A solid nights sleep just doesn't happen anymore with our little blind boy.  That's ok - I'll do it to keep him around with us....

But Sunday, I ended up making the call to skip church since our MSM kicks back in full gear in 2 weeks.  I had our JOY group later in the day & that would have left me with 3 hours to kill down around that area (its not convenient to drive all the way back home to drive all the way back down - over an hour of driving) so I just let the relaxing continue...

I turned on Netflix with my knitting & iced coffee & turned on What the Health...

What The Health – Exposing the Collusion and Corruption That is Making and Keeping Americans Sick, For Profit -- What The Health is the ground-breaking, powerful new film from the award-winning filmmakers of Cowspiracy, Kip Andersen and Keegan Kuhn. The film explores the growing list of medical doctors who are preventing and reversing chronic disease through diet—a diet that government, big pharma, animal agriculture, the USDA, and national health nonprofits do not want you to know about. #diet

Y'ALL.... Y'ALLL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I have so many thoughts. The main one - I want everyone to watch this.

I hate it because people have their minds so set on their opinions on going vegan or cutting out meat or animal products & I just dont get how someone can see studies like this & continue to feel like its totally ok.  Not even for the animals (which is huge for me) but for their own health.  That people come off totally off meds they have taken for years & the turn around in health of some people - & even the athletes that are doing Ironmans & weight lifting competitions all by eating vegan (people are hung up on protein)... it's just so eye opening & full of information - if you want to hear it.  

I feel so passionate about it because I have family & friends that just REFUSE to hear anything about this life style ... plus, you just want the best for your family & friends & want them to really HEAR this information....but minds are shut off from it.  So frustrating to me.  & I get if they watched this sort of documentary & then made the choice, but no one even wants to really hear the information on it all.  That's what is frustrating to me.  

I do recommend you catch it if you can... & watch it with an open mind to change in your life... be your own advocate for your health & those you love.

But after watching that & pulling out my vegan cookbooks & finishing knitting a hat, it was time to head down to see my Joysters...

We were a smaller group for the day with a lot of our gang traveling for vacation... but its funny to me how 6 people is now a 'small group' when we first started out with 5 of us as the WHOLE GANG.  How we've grown.  Love every minute of talking with these ladies.

Joysters ordering up

I left from there to head down to the grocery to pick up a few items that I forgot to pick up on Friday... I really was on this Mason Jar Salad kick especially after watching that documentary.

I got home & fed the dogs & ate some dinner myself & then it was on to put these babies together...

I am so excited to see how it turns out.  How they taste.  I've got one sitting in my work fridge right now counting down to lunch.  I brought in a bowl because I'm not sure if you can just eat it out of the jar (which is why I always read to get the wide mouth jars so you can do that???) or if I need to dump it to mix it together.... we'll see about 1:00pm today.

I just made 2 because Wednesdays is my #lunchwithmylove date so that's a given I'm eating out... & that will give me time to make up 2 more on Wednesday night. Should be easy enough since everything is already chopped & ready to go.

I ended up crawling in bed later than I wanted... I try to go to bed early now because I expect those yard walks a few times a night now.  Needless to say, I only had one last night... at 3:40am.... my poor Bruno boy. YAWN....

So how was your weekend?

Get a break in humidity?

Ever make mason jar salads? ... & how do you eat them?

Friday, July 14, 2017

Friday Favorite 07/14/17

Image result for knit by god's hand friday favorites

Favorite Food

vegan stuffed zucchini on a pan drizzled with tahini cheese sauce and toped with fresh cilantro

Vegan Stuffed Zucchini 
I could eat all of these

Favorite Fiber Project
24 Adorable Summer Poncho Free Crochet Design | DIY to Make

I really like this spring/summer poncho.
Really light weight yarn - lacy almost
& I love these colors.
& looks easy enough really.... just a really long rectangle, folded in half
... I could totally do this.

Favorite Beauty & the Beast

Coffee/Tea Mug: Modern Day Belle {11 oz Ceramic Mug} {Breakfast at Tiffany's, Fashion Illustration, Porcelain Mug, Cup}
I adore this!!!

Favorite Instagram Post
SOOOO worth the read!!!

A few months ago, my girl @nicholenordeman sent me a picture and a story. . It's about female elephants. See, in the wild, when a mama elephant is giving birth, all the other female elephants in the herd back around her in formation. They close ranks so that the delivering mama cannot even be seen in the middle. They stomp and kick up dirt and soil to throw attackers off the scent and basically act like a pack of badasses. . They surround the mama and baby in protection, sending a clear signal to predators that if they want to attack their friend while she is vulnerable, they'll have to get through 40 tons of female aggression first. . When the baby is delivered, the sister elephants do two things: they kick sand or dirt over the newborn to protect its fragile skin from the sun, and then they all start trumpeting, a female celebration of new life, of sisterhood, of something beautiful being born in a harsh, wild world despite enemies and attackers and predators and odds. . Scientists tell us this formation normally occurs in only two cases - under attack by predators like lions, or during the birth of a new elephant. . This is what we do, girls. When our sisters are vulnerable, when they are giving birth to new life, new ideas, new ministries, new spaces, when they are under attack, when they need their people to surround them so they can create, deliver, heal, recover...we get in formation. We close ranks and literally have each others' backs. You want to mess with our sis? Come through us first. Good luck. . And when delivery comes, when new life makes its entrance, when healing finally begins, when the night has passed and our sister is ready to rise back up, we sound our trumpets because we saw it through together. We celebrate! We cheer! We raise our glasses and give thanks. . I have this picture saved in 3 different places & in a frame. (I also have an elephant ring given to me and my girlfriends from @taralivesay - it tells me: never alone.) Maybe you need this too. If you are closing ranks around a vulnerable sister, or if your girls have you surrounded while you are tender, this is how we do it. . There is no community like a community of women.
A post shared by Jen Hatmaker (@jenhatmaker) on

Favorite Doodle

Paper airplanes are fun to draw | Linda Rea | Flickr

I've used this & it works to make cute paper airplane doodles
Give it a try

Favorite Reminder
36 Motivational Quotes For Success

Favorite Peencha

Even if you arent a fan of Macklemore, you still need to watch the video - TOTAL PEENCHA
... & honestly the song isnt that bad, I dont think.
But he lets his grandma do whatever she wants for her 100th birthday ("I want to do it all")
... & the end chokes me up every time.

Favorite Funnies

Afternoon Funny Picture Dump 37 Pics

Afternoon Funny Picture Dump 39 Pics

Morning Funny Picture Dump 30 Pics
I now what to text my number neighbor :)

Morning Funny Picture Dump 30 Pics

Morning Funny Picture Dump 36 Pics

Afternoon Funny Picture Dump 36 Pics

... when people are stuck in traffic & getting road rage all around me

.... when I'm telling myself that candy bar is totally OK to eat

... every time the hubs tells me to look at his phone & I dont have my glasses on

... me at 4:00 today

GIPHY! ( April 5, 2017 at 11:10AM

Happy weekend y'all!!!