Wednesday, November 30, 2011

FO: Pay It Forward 2011

I've had quite the busy month and there doesn't seem to be any yield signs ahead. I love it though! Especially since I've finished two PayItFwd gifts, started on my holiday crafts and I'm nearly finished with my Christmas cards!

Today I'd like to share my first PayItFwd 2011 gift. It's for my dear friend and snail mail pen pal (say that 10x fas!t), Sara. When I asked Sara what she would like, she mentioned a small wallet. Since I know she does a lot of farmer's market shopping, I decided to find a small wallet pattern.

Most of the patterns I found where either too large, or required complex steps. I wanted to keep it simple. My addiction to YouTube lead me to find a few wallet tutorials. I combined a couple of them, tried them using scrap fabric, and came up with a wallet that is just what I was looking for!

It was my first attempt at sewing a wallet. I plan to make a couple of them for Christmas. Maybe I can try my hand at a tutorial and free pattern!

I can't wait to share my other PayItFwd gifts! I'm hoping to finish another this weekend.

Until next time, how are your holiday crafts coming along?

with peace, love, unity, and respect,

P.S. To learn about my PayItForward, view my earlier post, Pay It Forward: Handmade Edition 2011

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Without A Doubt!

A couple of weeks ago, Mrmobilewill and I took a mini vacation over Veteran's day weekend. We stayed in Santa Barbara aka the "American Riviera". It is our go to spot when traveling through the state (we live north, family lives south). So it was lovely to plan a weekend trip there as I’ve wanted to do so for a while now.

Before the trip, we spent an evening looking up things to do in the area. I knew I wanted to go hiking and wine tasting. My therapist suggested hiking some trails up near the town of Ojai which is a short drive up the hill from Santa Barbara. We couldn’t decide on any until mrmobilewill came across the Channel Islands National Park. He was pretty much set on this activity, rain or shine. I was a bit against it at first because of the boat price and the weather. The last thing I wanted was to spend a day sopping wet, surrounded by water. But I could tell he had his heart set on it, so I agreed.

As the weekend came nearer, I was freaking out because I could not find any boat tours to the Islands. We waited until Thursday evening, the day we arrived to our destination. It worked out well in the end because we were able to check out the weather for the weekend before booking anything. So we locked in tickets for Friday.

One problem: We had to be at the dock in Ventura, about a thirty minute drive from SB, at eight o’clock in the morning. It was approaching eleven pm, and since I didn’t plan for this type of deserted activity, we did not have any lunch or coolers prepared. Fortunately, a grocery store was open early. I waltzed right in, grabbed the essentials for a picnic lunch, and a couple of hiking snacks.

I had thought we were late, thus causing some mad adrenaline which is typically something I lack in the mornings! But we made it to the dock with plenty of time to spare. We were even able to stop by for coffee! Yum!

 The boat ride, provided by Channel Islands Packers, is an hour trip to the Santa Cruz Island. This is one of the three islands that are protected by our National Parks. While there, our goal was to do some light hiking. On our way to the island, mrmobilewill studied the map and decided on a trail. It was marked as “easy.” Along with it, we had plans to follow one of the docents providing tours. We did this first so that we could break away once the tour headed onto a different trail.

Although it was nice to learn about the Islands, I was happy to hike alone with mrmobilewill. We began walking towards the trail. It was a gorgeous scene with the sun popping trough to guide us. About a quarter mile into the trail, something seemed off to me. I could have sworn we weren’t on the “easy” trail. My sense of direction is not the greatest so I put my trust into my personal guide and continued to follow him.

Short of breath and about one mile on the trail, my instincts were correct. We were not on the “easy” trail. We were on the Scorpion Loop trail! After confronting mrmobilewill about this, he said there “are far better views” and “it’ll be worth it.” Oh and, “it’s a moderate to strenuous hike.”
Say what?! It’s categorized as moderate to strenuous. And boy oh boy was it kicking my butt! Literally! My gluts where on fire!

I was not about to hike back down! I'd worked too hard!

This only made my temper rise. He kept reminding me that it’ll be worth it. This was not helping. But I knew I had made such progress and with an incline of 35%, I was not hiking back down. Baby steps, yelling (he was ahead of me), one mile later, and we made it to the top!

The view was spectacular! And surprisingly my allergies were clear. It was a perfect stop for our picnic lunch. After finishing my meal, I got up since I cannot sit in one position for too long. As I was using mrmobilewill for support, he shifted and said, “oh wait I have something in my pocket.” I smiled and asked if it was candy. He chuckled and said it was a surprise. I gasped! That’s when I knew it was exactly what I’d been waiting and hoping for the last, well since I've known him! He pulled out this little pouch and attempted to stay on one knee. He asked if I’d marry him. I quickly answered, “of course! Yes!” My mind, my heart, pretty much every fiber of my body was racing.

See the little pouch in hand? My friend Heather made it for him to carry my ring! So sneaky yet so sweet!

I am rarely surprised. This had me grinning from ear to ear as we continued on the trail, back toward the dock. Along the way he asked if it was worth it.
My answer: without a doubt!

I hope you all had a wonderful holiday weekend! I look forward to sharing some upcoming events and projects!

with peace, love, unity, and respect,