Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Cah-ray-zee Cro-shay-zee

Does your memory only remember the good things? And forget the bad times/memories? Mine does. I remember my brother and I getting along like peaches and cream growing up. My other siblings and parents will tell you that was not the case.  We were, according to them, constantly bickering and fighting.  But somehow I've managed to forget all those bad times he made me feel like an annoying little sis.  

My brain has also apparently forgotten how insanely busy I was last year at this time.  I mean, I remember crocheting up until December 24th for people's Christmas orders, but I don't remember having to sacrifice so much of my time.  The past two nights, I've woken up in the middle of the night to crochet.  Last night, I woke up at 3am and crocheted until 5am and then went back to bed.  Thank goodness for Roku, because nothing is on bunny ears TV at that hour. *Side note: I may have watched Elf too many times last Christmas season, because this year, I don't really feel the need to watch it 20 times (or even once through) between Thanksgiving and New Years. Sad.

As of today, all my out of town orders are done (except for the etsy order that came in at 6am this morning).  Now, I just have 17 beards to make between now and Friday.  A co-worker ordered 10, and she's going to give one to each family awesome!  The big seller has been the beards, but I've also sold quite a few pairs of fingerless gloves.  One pair, I sent to CT on December 8th using USPS and the buyer emailed me Sunday to let me know she JUST received them, and that the package was ripped open and all that made it was one DIRTY glove. Awesome. (But she did say the one glove looked lovely) Oh, and that she needed another pair by Friday. Have you BEEN to the post office or UPS store this week? I spent my entire hour lunch break there yesterday, and paid double the price of the fingerless gloves to ensure they make it to CT by Friday. 

I told myself this year's goal was to have a cut off date for orders, and to not still be crocheting on December 24th.  I'm guessing I'll make that goal by a whopping 2 days. The main reason I cannot say no? I love the idea of my stuff being given as presents, and being worn around proudly.  That and I'm a yes woman.  

I don't want to complain about getting orders and being busy because I love crocheting, and the money is going into a savings account for a very important reason.  But I've sacrificed a few things that I'm not proud of.  I've been so busy (crocheting before and after work until bedtime) that I haven't had the chance to spend time with friends, and specifically my parents.  They recently let me know how much they've missed me and it broke my heart.  I would do anything to be able to hang out with them. After all, I am their baby.  But I've stretched myself a little thin lately and really needed their reminder to pull me back in.  

I told Hottie Hubs last night that I will be taking a month off of crocheting in January.  But thats like Santa saying he's going to take all of December off.  The cold months in the year are when I get all my orders.  I don't get beard requests in July.  So I probably won't be taking January off, but I'm not going to be crocheting at 3am, this I know for shore.

I will leave this post with our Christmas card.  Since I work at NW Media Productions, I have access to an amazing photographer, Patrick Brown-Hayes and an amazing graphic designer (and one of my bffs) Jenny Purington. Put that together with the cutest most amazing dog in the world, and the outcome is this: 

*Picture was cropped quickly, so its not showing like the real card, but just know Jenny did an amazing and perfect job :)

Monday, November 26, 2012


Happy Holidays everyone!

With that said, I'm going to back up a smidge.

Holidays usually equal mass crocheting, Elf viewings, eating meat and cheese platters, sampling drinking lots of holiday cheer and hangin w/ the fam.  So far, I'm right on track, minus Elf.  But don't worry, we usually have that DVD in from December thru January and it gets played at least ten times.

I had my craft fair November 17th, and it was awesome.  Really, the only difference between this year and last year was the pile-o-beardies.  I had crocheted around 25 and sold 24.  The only lone beardie was bright green, so I spose I'm not surprised.  I sold a ton of beanies, fingerless gloves and headbands too.  I had a ton of band kids buy the beards and then walk around with them on during the whole fair.  Which was an obvious win-win for this chica. Big thanks to Kelly Riddle for helping me.  You rocked it.

After the craft fair, I immediately caught the cold Rodney'd been rockin, and I actually couldn't even go to work on Monday.  I think adrenaline kept me from getting sick for the fair, and then the second I let my guard down, the cold found me.

Luckily for my health, last week was a short week, so I was home for good on Wednesday afternoon crocheting my little heart out again (etsy and custom orders). 

Thursday morning. Ok people. I need to pause and let this be known.  DON'T TEXT ME "HAPPY THANKSGIVING" AT 6:30AM.  This has happened the last few years running, and its rude.  You might as well text me, "GET UP RIGHT NOW!!! ON YOUR DAY OFF!! I HATE YOU AND YOUR LITTLE DOG TOO".  Except THIS year, I was smart enough to put my phone on silent.  So HA. Tricks on everyone else on your mass text list.

Thursday, Rodney had to work in the  morning and our "dinner" was at noon, so I woke up and made individual pumpkin pies in large muffin tins and my signature cranberry sauce (just the bag-o-berries boiled with water, 2/3 C brown sugar and 1/3 C white sugar).  Dinner was at my parents and its was very low key as usual.  It was me, Hottie Hubs, Mom, Dad, Papa,  cousin Sean and his gf, and Uncle Tom.  We played the usual 31 knock, and I won the 2nd match.  Wah-ha-ha-ha.

Friday Rodney had to work again and called to tell me he wanted to go to Walmart. I about choked on my Via. Needless to say, we didn't go on BLACK FRIDAY. Duh.  What do I look like? I mean I was back in my jammies and hadn't put make up on so don't answer that question.  But I wasn't braindead.  So we went on Saturday. :)

This brings me to the post title.  Not this trip (thank the good Lord) but the last two times I've been to Walmart,  I've been walking behind someone as they're crop dusting me with their loud release of flatulence.  And not some elderly man that no longer hears/feels/cares about farting in public.  And not a pajama bottoms, tweety bird topped, scrunchie wearin, Walmart regular either.  Both times were from normally dressed, grown men pushing the cart for their wife and kids. 

Don't get me wrong.  I love a good toot.  They're freakin hilarious.  I mean, they're like snowflakes.  All different and beautiful in their own way.  But even I don't do that.  I at least hide in the fish tank aisle and blame it on the oxygen bubbles if need be.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Beardie Fever

Have you seen these?

Lady Beards

 Man Beards

If you're a friend of mine and not some blogstalker (which is o.k. too) you probably have.

I call them beardies, I spose because it sounds like (blake's) beanies and because I'm a dork.

I've sold them to people in Vermont, Texas, New York, Utah, Ohio, California, Louisiana, Deleware, Kansas, Florida,  Seattle, Pullman, to name a few places.  Crazy thinking about all these people putting something I crocheted on their faces.

The latest beardie craze happened over the weekend.  If you saw my FB posts, then you already know.  I have an order for 50 OR MORE.   And she wanted around 1/2 of those mailed to her this week, so all beardie buyers can wear them for a football game on Friday.  Its a fundraiser for the high school she teaches at, and the mascot has an orange beard, as shown here:

It's super awesome because it means lots of exposure and mulah for muah.  But what it also means is that I'm crocheting instead of sleeping, cooking, cleaning, bathing, blinking, etc.  Well, I guess the I don't normally bathe on Saturdays anyways, so thats nothing new. jk. kinda.

On top of that, my etsy store is on FY-AH.  I started my etsy page in December of 2011, so I didn't realize how much business to expect for the fall season.  Man,  people plan ahead!!! Either that or its a lot colder in other parts of the US right now because so far this week, I've had 7 orders for hats, fingerless gloves and beardies. 

Plus, I've got my in town peeps ordering stuff too!!!  (you guys are priority right now fyi)

Obviously, I LOVE CROCHETING.  And every year I'm helluz busy.  But this year tops it.  I've stocked up for my November 17th craft fair, but now I'm selling the stuff I have in stock, so I'm now restocking my stock.   I'm loving all the orders I've received and I see myself crocheting until I grow old and can no longer operate my robotic fingers. 

Thanks to EVERYONE who is sportin a Blake's Beanie, Beardie, Headband, or fingerless gloves, pretend eating my crocheted food,  or has just purchased one and is waiting (hopefully patiently) for one.   

Also, thanks to ROKU for allowing Netflix and Hulu+ to be streaming Teen Mom, Parenthood, Breaking Bad, Walking Dead, Workaholics, and many many movies. 

If YOU would like a beardie, or anything else crochet related, email me at, or visit my etsy shop!  And if you've already purchased something of mine, I would LOVE a picture of you wearing the beard or hat!!!

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

8 years and counting

Today I celebrate the 8th anniversary of being married to my best friend.

I read something in the Readers Digest this morning (I won't tell you where I was, but maybe I just did) that was advice from mothers to their children, and one of them was how to stay married.  It said just one thing: marry someone that makes you laugh.  To me, that is a best friend.  They are there with/for you through all the good and the bad, but they are the ones you have fun with, laugh with, and enjoy the most out of life with.

I'm not saying our relationship has been perfect. We, just as all married couples, have fought, cried, and mean mugged.  But those times really have been overshadowed by all of the times we've laughed.  And loved.  And snowboarded, fished, camped, Seahawk knuckled, snuggled, etc etc.

Remember this post about the 14 page love letter I found, written for my college freshman boyfriend?   When reading it, I felt those old feelings of missing him while he was away and thinking of the future when I got to spend every day and night with him. It seemed like such a far off event.  Being married, being one.  That was 13 years ago.  Crazytown.  I really did feel such strong feelings for this man and I knew they were for reals. But to say that out loud as a 17 year old sounds kinda silly because how can you know at that age that your choice in "the one" is really going to turn out to be "the one"???  Sometimes it just works out that way.

Us @ Prom 2000

He asked my parents for my hand in marriage in May of 2004.  I was a couple months from graduating and I knew I wanted to get married that summer.  However, he hadn't asked me yet and the summer was in full swing. (I was thisclose to asking him myself)  On July 9th we went camping on a beach up river and the next morning as the sun came up he asked me.  He got down on one knee and professed his love for me and said he wanted to spend the rest of his life with me. He cried, I cried.  And of course I said yes.  Three months later, we were married :) We had a fabulous wedding.  It was on my parents front lawn of their Coeur d'Alene lakefront cabin.  The reception was aboard the resort's cruise ship,  The Mish-an-Nock.  It was October 2, 2004. We were crazy, crazy young, and crazy young in love.

 Thanks Lyndee for the pics I stole from your FB page :)

We did not live together before we got married.  So even though we'd already been together for about 5 years, there was still something very exciting to look forward to.  I knew most of his habits, and he mine, but there was a sense of newness to the relationship that made it all that more exciting.  It was the beginning of the longest slumber party I've ever had. I remember not being able to sleep very well with someone RIGHT THERE.  (We had a queen bed and if you don't know, Hottie Hubs is 6'7").  Now when he's not there I can't sleep very well.

We still hide behind corners and scare each other.  We have been known to dump a cup of cold water over the shower curtain, and most recently he got me with the ol' rubber band around the kitchen sprayer.  We are each others best audiences, laughing at our duuuumb jokes. (Most recent: his impression of playing a giant violin during opening credits of Walking Dead)

Thanks to you my love, for finding my jokes still funny, my face still beautiful, and for keeping my heart fluttering.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Stat girls

With all the football talk in the news, it gets me thinking about how I got into liking football in the first place.  My mom (who was a P.E. minor in college I might add) sat me down at the kitchen table, drew a picture of a football field and taught me Football 101.  I knew a few terms- touchdown, first down, interception. But I didn't know the rules.  I didn't grow up in a home where football was watched all that often, unless it was the Huskies playing the Cougars.  Heck, I didn't even know until college that there was a game on TV every Thanksgiving.  My family actually talks to each other and plays cards around the table after the glutenous meal.  Go figure.

So why the need to know the rules to football???  Because I was intercepted by a coach and asked to be a "stat girl".  <pun fully intended>

My freshman year of high school had started out great.  I had already been to band camp (in my hs band was cool...really it was. i promise), already met lots of upperclassmen, and was getting attention from a few of them.  So when I got asked to watch the football team's every move, I jumped at the chance. Especially because they also asked my very best friend Katie.  I remember telling the coach that I totally knew/loved football butts in uniforms.   But in reality, I had no idea what really went on during the game. Well, besides cheering when we got a touchdown. 

Basically, the coaches wanted two girls to look at to take notes during the game so they could call in the stats of the game to the local paper to print in the next day's Sports section. They told us our stats didn't have to be exactly correct, but hopefully something close.  One of us was to take Offensive Notes, and the other Defensive.  I chose or was given (not sure which) defensive.  Thank goodness, because the offensive side of things demanded more attention than I wanted to give. I was too busy checkin out butts in tight pants.  My job (besides flirting with the players) was to mark down all tackles and sacks, and to record how far all kickoffs/punts and their returns were.  Katie had the much tougher job (in my opinion) recording all the offensive moves.  She had to mark down who threw to what guy, and how far that guy ran or how long the throw was.  Katie ended up being so accurate, that after a few games, the coaches relied on our stats more than any other stat girl before us.  

We started out working the freshman team, and then the next 3 years we were strictly varsity.  It was a blast.  We traveled with the team to every game, hung out before the games and rode back in the super stinky bus full of boys.  Life was good.  

Specific memories include:

One of the coaches "christening" (his overheard words, not mine)the bathroom while Katie and I sat in the hall close by.  I can't remember if he was embarrassed or not when he walked out. He may have been more proud than embarrassed. 

Getting to sit in the score box with the other coaches

Standing on the sidelines feeling eyes on my booty (and turning around in confirmation)

Chillin with my guy friends on the bus

Freezing my fingers off trying to keep track of who made the tackles.

Tripping over the cord that was attached to the coach's headset and nearly yanking him to the ground. 

Watching said coach yell and scream at the player he thought tripped over said cord.

Having major BFF time with Katie.  

And mostly just feeling like a badass on the sidelines during the game with my BFF.

Oh to have been on the Seahawks sideline during the now infamous MNF game. I would have been very busy marking down all those sacks!!!!

Monday, September 17, 2012

Seahawk Knuckles!!!

As many of you already know, we are Seahawk fans.  It started a few years ago (for me) when we went to a Seattle Seahawks pre-season game.  It was against the Oakland Raiders and it was the end of August.  The weather was perfect, the beer was flowin and we were with our great friend Leigh.  I was really feelin the Seahawk Spirit and wanted to share it with EVERYONE,  so I was going around giving complete strangers "Seahawk Knuckles".  If I came across a rowdy Raiders fan, I would feel them out and either say Seahawks or Raiders Knuckles (I didn't want to get shot in downtown Seattle in front of my husband) because I wanted everyone to feel my same excitement for the game.  We won, so the knuckles continued long after the game was over.  And the "knuckles" stuck.  Now a couple years later we've stepped up our loyalty and own actual Seahawks gear.  Well, that and the crocheted bracelets I made. 


Two years ago I wanted to buy a custom women's fit (key words) jersey that has the #12 on front/back and the word KNUCKLES on the back. But they were like 80 bucks.  I wasn't that hardcore of a fan yet, so I decided it could wait another year.  Then last year, same dilemma.  Just wasn't sure if it was worth it.  Then this year rolled around and I advised hottie hubs that for my 30th bday I wanted the custom jersey.  (He went sky diving on his 30th, so I thought the price of the jersey was of no concern)

THE jersey I want. Minus the 18 and Rice.

New Nike jerseys. Gross!

Only problem was, the NFL changed jerseys.  The now have Nike instead of Reebok, and simply put, they're just not as cool.  1. They look like soccer jerseys.  2. The numbers are too cartoon like. 3. They say Seahawks in tiny print on the shoulder, and 4. Where's the Seahawk logo? 

HH (hottie hubs) said he was going to order me the Nike one that was now $150, but wanted to check with me first before doing so because of the drastic changes.

So what's a cheap fan to do??? Thats right, visit a website from China that offers exactly what I want.  A women's fit custom Knuckles 12 jersey.  It was $80 and the Reebok version.  Perfect right?

When it arrived, we had to go to the post office to pick it up since the package wouldn't fit in my mailbox and it was an international package.  Coincidentally the day was June 6th, HH's bday.  (our birthdays are a week apart)  When I opened the package, I noticed right away it wasn't women's fit.  Thats ok, maybe they swapped it with a size small in the men's jersey to appease me.  Nope.  It was size 48 MENS. 

In their defense, it did have #12 on it, and it did say KNUCKLES on the back.  So they were 2/3s correct in the order.  We held it up and it actually looked too big even for the hubs.  But it wasn't.  It fit him just right.  How awesome for him, right?  I mean it was his birthday.  But he already owns a Seahawks jersey!  And this was supposed to be MY birthday present! 

Yesterday was the Seahawks vs Cowboys game in Seattle and the 12th man was ever present.  We kicked the Cowboy's assless chaps right off em. Hottie Hubs wore his custom jersey and his crocheted bracelet, and I wore my longsleeve Seahawks shirt with my new Seahawk earrings I recieved for my bday from the Hottie. (He also bought me Seahawk socks, that I renamed Sawks and a Seahawk beach towel....cuuuute!!!)

So, should I spend the $150 and get what I want?  I'm still trying to find a website (not from China) that has leftover Reebok women's fit jersey's that can be customized.  IT HAS TO SAY KNUCKLES WITH THE #12.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Summer's still here folks

Summer has not left the valley yet.  I know people keep wishing it would, and my fall wardrobe is trying to make a comeback. But lets not get ahead of ourselves.  We still have another month of the hot weather.  I know, its getting darker earlier and mornings are cold (allowing my heated seat obsession to return), but the proof's in the puddin:

And to celebrate the Indian Summer and one of our best friend's 30th bday, we went rafting and fishing this last weekend.  We had a blast.  I didn't bring my pole, but had an itch to fish so I threw my line in and caught a pretty big one on my only cast. I'm real good.

Catch and Release

Look at those baby blues!

Nate was a fishin machine

Crazy Crew

Another from the machine

Lets hear it for the boys

False advertising. I was not drinking the Pendelton.

Gotta love the Ronde

He's dedicated

Me n Carly

Rubble Rope

Crap Room turned Craft Room

Post Originally Written Sept 4th:

We had big Labor Day weekend plans.....and then the j.o.b. got in the way. Hate it when that happens!  However, it may have been God's way of telling us to STAY HOME and GET WORK DONE, SON.

So, that's what we did. We had a big day planned for Saturday. Costco, Home Depot, (Bed, Bath and Beyond if we had time). I showed hubs the Martha Stewart 3x3 shelving unit that I wanted, and stated I needed 2, possibly 3.  We bought two, got home and quickly put them together. Teamwork!!! Have I mentioned the nerdy song we wrote about teamwork?  I'll sing it for ya sometime if you haven't heard it already.

Our house is pretty big, and that allows me and my hubby to each have our own room, separate from the one we share of course. This is awesome, because I have a lot of my own crap. I'm a borderline hoarder (teetering on the messier side of the border), keeping tons of stuff from my childhood that I cannot throw/give away.  Cleaning my room wouldn't have taken that long, except I kept finding stuff that brought up crazy-back-in-the-day memories.  For example, I found a 14 page letter I wrote Rodney when I was entering my Sr. year of high school. (ahhh high school love) Seems silly, however it detailed exactly how/when we first got together. Excerpts from the letter:

"The first time I saw you: Band Camp '96"   (not makin this shiz up, people)

"Then I asked you, 'Do you want to go to the movies sometime?' My heart was pounding. I'm sure you could hear it. You said, 'Sure that'd be cool' "

"We went to Coeur d' Alene a couple of times. Farting in the can, watching Bloomsday, falling asleep in front of Whose Line Is It Anyways. Kissing under the moonlight, as my mom would say."

After strolling down memory lane, I got back to work clearing out my room to make room for my awesome shelves.  I had hoarded a crib from my sister (What? Its nice, and I was hoping one day to use it!!!) that in reality didn't need to be fully set up and in the corner of the room as if we were bringing a baby home tomorrow. So I broke that down, and hid it in my basement.  Got the room pert'near empty, and then moved those suckers in. As I was filling the cubes with my precious yarn I heard my hubby from the next room yell to me, "I really want to come see what it looks like!" He was really excited for me to have my room all neat and tidy and able to show off when people come over instead of insinuating there's a hideous beast we're shielding from society.
Behold the power of Martha.

Hanging the official Blake's Beanies sign

(For some reason I only took an after pic with my ghetto fab phone, so I'll have to update this post later when I take a pic with my ghetto fab camera.)
Sunday we went golfing with one of my bffs Shauna and her bf Eric. It was the perfect day. I didn't even pit out.

Me n' Hottie Hubs 

Armpit Eric

Crazy Shauna and Crazy Blake

Monday it was back to the newly labeled craft room for more organizing.  When I had had about enough, I stopped and started a Breaking Bad marathon while crocheting and making a giant pasta salad and pork ribs.
And that ladies and gentleman was my Labor Day weekend. I'm sad to see it gone, but happy to hear my husband say, "oh wow" every. single.time. he walks past my OPEN door'd craft room.

*Side note: We had our 2 year anniversary of adopting Lola Rae this weekend.  It was 2 Labor Days ago that we met and fell in love with her.  I highly suggest visiting a shelter before buying a puppy or dog. 

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Running and Vegas

Last night I laid awake thinking about how I was going to change my lifestyle.  Basically I don't work out (although I am a gym member), I drink alcohol quite frequently, and I sit on my couch and crochet almost every night. So, when I button my jeans in the morning, why am I constantly surprised that they're tight?!?!?!

I'm not opposed to exercise. Its just that I can easily find every excuse not to. Last night it was a business meeting (at a bar). Tonite I'm babysitting my niece. Tomorrow, well tomorrow is Friday, and Fridays just seem like the one day NOT to exercise. Well that and Saturday.

Back to the late night thinking. I really wanted to go 90 hard core days. No alcohol, exercising every day. I even planned on waking up early to go to the gym.  But, my thoughts were way more motivated than my body.

So when I saw that there was a Rock n Roll 1/2 Marathon in Las Vegas on December 2nd, I got really excited.  For more than one reason.  My brother and his family live in Vegas, so there's always that.  And there's Vegas. A place that needs no explanation, rhyme or reason for visiting. And running 13.1 miles?!?! No one would question my motives.

So, I gotta start training. December 2nd is 13 weeks away.  Plenty of time for quality training. I've trained for Bloomsday before, which is around 8 miles, and I've completed that in an hour and 20 minutes. That's about a 10 min mile pace, so that means that I'd be done in around 2 hours, which sounds like a lot of running when I put it in those terms.  But, with THIS race, there's bands at every mile, and you're running on the strip from 4-6pm. Sounds perfect to me.

Wouldn't it be super rad if we had a group of us go and run together? Wouldn't it be even more rad if we  dressed up?!?!  Elvis? Bret Michaels?  Liberace? 

If I end up doing this alone, no one will know what happened in Vegas. Because, well, it stayed there.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Driveway Gourmet needs your help!

Amazing people. Amazing food.

One of my very best friends Chrissy Cargill and her hubby Scott need your clicks to win big!!!  They have a food truck called Driveway Gourmet and they've entered a contest to win $5000 to makeover their truck.  You can enter 1 time per day, per email address. Here's the link.

I'm about to get real with your taste buds, so pucker up and try to keep that saliva from dripping down your front.

Let me just start with the Tri Tip and Bleu Cheese Tacos. This is what I eat 2-3 times per week. I try not to eat out THAT much, but I like to pretend that eating at your bestfriends taco truck isn't technically eating out. I've literally talked someone into getting them everytime I'm down there (and by down there, I mean behind Follett's Furniture Mon-Fri 10am-3pm).  

In between two corn tortillas is cheese. Then on top of the quesadilla is tri tip beef with bleu cheese melted on top, with a lil lettuce, green onions and tomatoes.  You get chips and spanish rice to go along ( i usually put a lil rice in my tacos). Plus you get a container of the homemade salsa (which I also put on my tacos).

The gourmet tuna melt is freakin fab. The classic chicken caesar is fab. Their Philly is also nothing short of amazing. It outdoes every single philly, even Philadelphians would agree.

Aaand have you HAD A MAGIC COOKIE BAR from them? Re-donk-u-lous. 

My parents had them cater a party, where they made Scott's famous pulled pork sammies. He also made chicken wings for my white trash 29th bday party and I'm pretty sure they were gone in a matter of minutes.

They make their own salsa and guac. too, and I've stopped by their house JUST to get some for the mexican meal I was making at home. Thats how freakin fabulous they are. 

So Please please please vote vote vote for them.  The voting ends August 31st.  Oh, and go eat there today!  This week's special is....Chicken BACON tacos. Nuf said. 

Monday, August 20, 2012

Havin babies

Another warning: This blog is deeply personal and again has nothing to do with sewing and/or crafts. (My palms are sweating right now thinking about pressing publish) I guess its safe to assume that my blog has taken a different road than I originally planned.  This subject has been weighing heavy on my mind and heart, and I feel like after 5+ years its time for me to come clean and be totally honest.  

I've gotten asked around 1000 times (maybe more, seriously) when I'm going to have kids. And 990 of those answers have been a pretty common response to the tune of, "Oh sometime soon I hope!" or "We're still young, we've got time!".  But what I really want to say is that we can't have children unless we spend a lot of money, time and energy.

I feel like thats too long/personal of an answer that will just cause further questioning, going beyond the small talk most people were simply looking for.  For the last 3ish years, I worked with literally hundreds of (baby crazy) women (all in one building), and got the question many times, often from the same women asking me over and over.  One time I just told a girl matter of factly, "I can't have kids". Just to get her off my back.  For some reason, people feel its their business/right to know whether or not you become a parent. Pssst. Its not.

So, I'm here to set the record straight.  I'm no longer going to hide my truth. And that truth is called Huntingtons Disease (HD).  This is a very scary disorder that is only passed on genetically.  Each person affected with the Huntingtons gene has a 50/50 chance of passing it on to each child they have.  So really the only way to stop this gene mutation, is to simply not have kids (as there is no known cure yet).  Unless one goes through IVF and PGD (in-vitro fertilization and pre-implantation genetic diagnosis), which can cost around $20,000 per try. Basically they test the embryos for the genetic mutation, and the ones that do not have it, they implant back into the body in hopes that a pregnancy will continue and the end result would be a 100% HD free baby that is 50% dorky me and 50% hottie hubs.

You see, my incredibly amazing and wonderful husband has HD. I knew this was a possibility before we got married and I remember thinking that I might not be able to have children. But at 22, you feel like you have your whole life ahead of you, and I knew that I wanted to be with my man and nothing was going stop that.

A couple years ago, he decided he wanted to find out for sure.  Mainly because we did want a family in the near future, and we wanted to know before we got pregnant.  We decided that we will not get pregnant naturally to ensure that the HD gene stops here.  I want to be clear that this was our personal decision. A very personal, long debated decision between me and my babe. See, the other side of the coin, is that HD could possibly have a cure before our child will be of the age where HD starts (not until around age 50ish) or better yet, there's the 50% chance our child wouldn't have it at all.

I've heard quite a few times in the past that we shouldn't worry about HD and just have babies.  I soooo wish we could.  But I know that we would have to someday explain to our child that he or she needs to be tested because there is a 50% chance they too may have what their father has.  I would rather explain to my child why we chose adoption, or why we went through IVF to conceive.  This has weighed heavily on my heart for so many years and I've gone back and forth on what to do, and all I can say is that our decision is solely ours. I can completely understand why couples have chosen to have their own children who may be at risk, and in fact I did get pregnant about 5 years ago to have that end in miscarriage. God has a plan, things happen for a reason. Two cliches I do believe in. 

As a perfectly healthy 30 year old, this is extremely hard to grasp. Especially because I always imagined myself with at least 2 kids by this age. (I actually want 4 total!!!) No one every imagines that when they decide to start a family they will have such a giant roadblock.  I've come to realize that infertility is a common problem for many people.  Being able to get pregnant (for free) is a privilege.  Unfortunately, most don't see that. Most accidentally get pregnant and then the decision to become parents has been decided for them.  One of my biggest pet peeves is seeing white trash people having babies they can't/don't want to take care of.  It also bugs the absolute crap out of me when I see people complaining about their kids on FB or to me.  I understand that parenthood has its not-so-fun moments, but there are people out there that would give their entire life savings to have a bad day in parenthood. Me me me, pick me!!!

One reason I have not come right out and blurted to the world my life story is because its an obviously very sensitive subject that my hubby and I share, and I'm not sure I was totally ready before. But education and knowledge is power, and I want to everyone that knows us to know about HD.  The more people know and understand, the closer we can come to a cure.  We need to support the dedicated teams out there right now that are spending their time and energy working on the research for a cure.  I want to spend as many days as God gives me with my man.   

Life is not fair. We all know this.  So far, my life has been nothing but blessed to the max. I had the most amazing childhood, luckier than most.  I got to fly to McCall in my dad's private plane for breakfast (mmm....Those Potatoes).  I've travelled to the Bahamas on a cruise ship, Hawaii, and to Taiwan.  I have parents that are still married and madly in love. I have 3 older siblings that have always wanted to spend time with their much younger sis.  I've been married almost 8 years to my bestfriend from high school (have I mentioned how gorgeous he is?).  I have the most amazing, sweet sweet, precious dog.  So I suppose some wrench needed to be thrown in the mix to bring me back down from cloud nine. 

I'm ready to give people an answer they probably were not expecting the next time I get asked.  I'm ready to spread awareness about HD.  Please consider donating time and/or money to HD events such as the Hog & Grog event held in Lewiston every year, or visit the HDSA website for info/resources/events. My brother-in-law and his wife have also started a non-profit organization called Healing Huntingtons and I encourage you to "like" the page to stay updated.  My family needs your help, as do many many many families out there affected by HD.

Thanks for the support, love, and kind words already given to me and my family.   God is ever present.

Friday, August 17, 2012

Photo Shoot!

This is Kennedy.

She has probably had her picture taken every single day of her life. In fact, I would go out on a limb and say she has had multiple pictures taken of her every day since she was born.

But she's just so amazingly beautiful that I don't blame Chrissy (her mom and my bff) one bit.

So they came over last week and we got right down to business.

For Blake's Beanies of course!

Sock Monkey - Vintage-y colors

We happen to be babysitting my niece Roselynn.  Such a sweet baby!

Kitty Hello!

Chrissy's a Vandal girl and I aim to please.

I'm gearin up for the fall/winter season!  That means craft fairs, etsy orders, football, and lots-o-yarn.  There's lots more hats where these came from, and I'm always taking custom orders: any size, color, character, style.

Blake's Beanies has also expanded to beardies, fingerless gloves, headbands, flower accessories and much more.  "Like" my facebook page to stay updated!!!

Thursday, August 9, 2012

That looks JUST like......

So here are the pics I was talking about in this post.

I hadn't walked into the cabin 5 minutes and my sister snatched away her son's iPad (which he was in a serious Avengers game) to take my picture.  After that, we laughed until Phoenix had the hiccups, and then laughed some more.  Then I went pee, (i made it to the toilet, thankfully) and then we laughed some more.

They say we look alike. I s'pose its in the eyes.

She's always been so photogenic.

Robyn and Phoenix.

When I FINALLY got the iPad to myself, I thought I'd self portrait a few. I know I said I don't normally take self pics, at least not post the ones I take, buuuuut, I'm gonna go with my instincts on this one. Saddle up partner!

My chin, acting the part of a dimpled butt.

Hey you over there.
Wanna see how many of your
fingers fit on my forehead?

Fire Marshall Bill

Dad, you realize the camera does the silly faces for you, right?

Everytime we brought these out to show someone new, everyone's reaction was the same......."Hey! That looks just like_____"