Saturday, December 31, 2011

About me and why I'm here

Hi guys. My name is Shayla and I live in Louisiana. I'm from Williamsburg, VA. I also claim Richmond, VA since I went to college there and lived there for 6 years! Yeah VCU!! (Virginia Commonwealth football team, but a great basketball and soccer team!)  What brought me to Louisiana? Well I'd always wanted to be a teacher so I joined Louisiana Teaching Fellows and got in so I moved here in less than 2 weeks of finding out I got in! I taught middle school science for 2 years, decided it's not for me at this time and place, so now I'm working at a craft store and also caregive (CNA).

 I decided I needed to start blogging to keep me organized and to have a single location where I can document my creative endeavors as well as keep track of my fitness and reading progress. I belong to a lot of different websites that help me but I miss journaling and this will kind of sub for that. Granted this will have a lot less of "Insert boy's name here-smiled at me today! He is so cute!" that my old journals used to have. haha...oh those days were so exciting weren't they?

I want to also start a video podcast about my knitting and spinning...if I do this will be the home of it. I actually tried to record a show today but either I deleted it or my computer had a hiccup while I was recording it. Oh well. It was good practice. I learned I definitely need to have notes written out.

What can you expect to see here? Anything I feel like writing about. But of course it'll be mostly knitting and spinning, soaping, and fitness. A few book reviews here and there but don't expect anything really good because I hate writing them. Reminds me of english class. I just like to read for enjoyment. I know it's lazy. I don't mind reading other people's reviews though. Oh and cardmaking whenever I actually make some. I hope this blog will encourage me to make more and sew more. I have so many materials but I'm not as familiar in the crafts so I get anxious about making mistakes and never get started...or finish anything.

Lastly, I'm going to use this as a place to update you all on my business, Venusian Soaps, I'd really like for my business to grow and like Heather from Highland Handmades/the Fiberista Files, I'd like to communicate how things go for me. Her growth this year is truly inspiring!

I may also use this as a board to show you what I find interesting. But isn't that what Pintrest is for?

 Thanks for reading!

Thursday, December 29, 2011

2011 Review

Well, since it's the last Thursday of the year, and News Years is on Sunday, I figure I'd better write up my 2011 accomplishments. Yesterday, I went through my Ravelry page and did some calculations. I love Ravelry! I'm always surprised by how many knitters down here in Louisiana don't know about it. It's crazy. I guess that makes sense though, considering we only have one LYS (local yarn store) and it just opened in 2009...maybe even 2010...I know it was after I moved here. Anyways, there I go randomly talking about something else. You'll probably see a lot of that. Sorry in advance.

Anyways, on to my stats for the year:


I've knit 34 items (not including dishcloths)
afghan squares for TKGASS (the knitgirllls afghan square swap)- 4
pairs of socks- 17
Blankets- 1-Girasole, but I also finished the Moderne Baby Blanket. Most of the knitting was not done in 2011 so I'm not really going to count it.

Total number of yards knit in 2011: 10,914 yards! Awesome, I wish I'd known I was so close to getting to 11,000. That would've been cool, that wasn't even a goal! But you know what, I still have 3 currently active WIPs which definitely put me over the 11k mark! Seriously, I'm working a pair of socks, and I have two sweater wips and I've started all 3 in 2011. And all of them are near completion! Oh and then there are at least 5 dishcloths I've made that aren't included in that yardage. So YAY for knitting 11k yards in 2011!!!


I've spun the equivalent of 12 bumps of fiber...but really more like 50oz/3.1 lbs of fiber...I wish I had kept better track but apparently I forgot to write down some things. I also apparently didn't enter all of my yardage into Ravelry too so I'm not sure of the yardage of some items. And forget about the WPI on these bad boys. I think about it as I'm winding it on my niddy noddy and then think I should wait until I soak it in case the fiber blooms, after which I completely forget.

1. Road trip, 2.Smoke on the water socks, 3. DSC_0103, 4. DSC_0086, 5. 003, 6. Untitled, 7. manic handspun, 8. DSC_0071, 9. Picture 448, 10. all fibers as of 2/27., 11. Picture 353, 12. Rebatch 12/30/11, 13. DSC_0032, 14. Sweet summer sky socks, 15. DSC_0038, 16. Picture 454, 17. DSC_0085, 18. DSC_0070, 19. DSC_0076, 20. DSC_0089, 21. basic socks, 22. First afterthought heels, 23. Make it work, 24. Domino socks, 25. Vampire Kisses, 26. algae socks, 27. rick socks, 28. knitting 2011 015, 29. Clapotis, 30. DSC_0082, 31. Picture 348, 32. Blueberry Lime Verbena, 33. Rapture, 34. Hazelnut, 35. Raspberry Guava


My initial goal was to read 20 books; it might have even been 12. But I kept increasing it because I was going to make my goal in the summer. I ended up reading 34 books this year! Probably will finish another one tomorrow depending on how work goes. Awesome! I love reading and it totally fell off in college and on into my years in teaching. I don't think I would've read as many books in 2011 if it weren't for me discovering (well I knew about them but hadn't read them yet) the Sookie Stackhouse novels. I devoured them. I also tried to read a few classics this year....I don't know if I'm going to continue with that goal because those are the books that just dragged on and on for me. I mean Anna Karenina was on my currently reading shelf on Goodreads for 8 months I think. RIDICULOUS! 

I have absolutely no idea how many items I sewed...I know I made at least one skirt and a shirt...I have a dress that needs a zipper and finishing touches languishing (can you see a trend here...I get things to almost done and then just let them sit...for months!) This is why I decided I need a blog. I will maintain a notebook for things as well so I can use my lovely pens but I like that I can attach pictures here if I want to as well. 


I joined Sparkpeople at the beginning of the year and Yay for that! I have a consistent way to track my exercise!(The points, although I really don't use them as a reward reward -like for yarn or something-they are motivation to keep track of my efforts. I have a notebook that I like to use as well so I can write more details like how I'm feeling or how I broke down my's also another reason to use my lovely pens). So according to the website, I've exercised 6,476 minutes! Which is great but apparently my goal for the year was 7,161 minutes. Boo. I definitely fell down this month.October was also a down month which was when I finally got a job. I have ran 85.71 miles to date! Whoo!