Resist. And Knit Kitty Hats.


It’s no secret that I’m still struggling with the impending reality of Inauguration Day. With news coming out daily about election hacking, vote machine tampering, and other issues in key states, there’s this part of me that is holding out a tiny thread of hope for Dec. 19th, but honestly…  I don’t think the Avenging League of Hamilton Electors are going to swoop in like Thor and Iron Man and save us from the Dark Elves, er, Sauron, er, Paul Ryan, what’s coming.

I feel lost, and scared, and part of me wants to put my head down and focus on my own paper and the rest of me feels like that’s how we got ordinary Germans looking the other way as their neighbors were carted off to Auschwitz.

Better just to keep my eyes open and act accordingly, then.

I’m worried about my mom and how she’ll weather the cuts to Social Security and Medicare that Satan Paul Ryan is planning to make.

I’m worried about my kids, and how they depend on the ACA for their health insurance and hell, how I depend on certain provisions of the ACA for access to health insurance.

The list is long and I could go on.

Suffice it to say, I’m worried. I knit when I’m worried.So right now I knit pink hats during TV time, for the Pussyhat Project, to send to Washington DC since I can’t get to the Women’s March in DC. And, I’m making some for the march in Los Angeles on January 21st. I’ll probably have a few extras so if you see me there, hit me up.

Like safety pins, when it comes down to it, making pink hats with kitty ears won’t do a damn thing unless we’re willing to back our symbols up with direct action. So be the person who is willing to take that action. Step up. Help your neighbor. Help a stranger. Collaborate. Strategize. Network locally. Educate yourself. Wake up. Pay attention. Resist. On January 21st, whether it’s in DC or a city near you, march.

And knit. In the very least it’s soothing. Knitting this yarn, which is Caron Simply Soft dyed a rather eye-popping shade of neon pink and acrylic to boot, is not soothing in the slightest. But the act itself, of knitting? Good therapy in uncertain times. And it makes me happy to think that some folks will have hats on march day.

Honey Cowl


After seeing this pattern referenced on Mason Dixon Knitting and finding it on my long-ignored Ravelry queue, I decided that I needed to knit myself one. I live in Southern California again, and, while not exactly a nexus of polar vortex, it does dip down a little bit at night here in the “winter” months. And by “down” I mean, it’s been getting into the high 40’s at night, which is basically a pretty balmy spring day up in the mountains.

I don’t, actually, miss that part.

Shortly after we moved to Mi-Wuk 3 years ago, I cast on a shawlette in some unknown silk blend, thinking it would make a nice winter scarf. Heh. Reality quickly disabused me of that notion and it went into the Basket of Shame while I cast on something warmer, in alpaca. While it might have been a little bit light for the climate there, the DK weight silk blend is perfect for the climate here. Sadly I’ve lost the tags, so I have no idea what exactly this blend is made of, who dyed it, or where I bought it. The colors remind me a little of a soft Impressionist painting, though, and I’m utterly delighted with the results.

Et Viola, I present the Monet Mystery Honey Cowl. The First. It’s a great, repetitive, two row pattern, one of which is knitting and one of which is purling and slipping. It’s easy enough to do while watching a movie or having a conversation with a friend.

Thanks, Mason Dixon Knitting! I probably wouldn’t have knit this one without finding your archive of Honey Cowls. And now I have a new favorite go-to gift project.

When in panic, I knit.

Still reeling from the results of the election and dealing with a lot of anxiety about the well-being of myself and my fellow MoT, our Muslim-American neighbors, the LGBT community, #BlackLivesMatter, and in general the nation and the planet, in the wake of November 8th.  Pretty much every single day brings a new headline that adds to my current existential angst, and I can’t imagine that’s going to change or improve anytime soon. So what does one do when one is having panic attacks about a Trump presidency and dreading the inevitable civil rights nightmare that will shortly follow inauguration day?

Well there’s been some knitting. Rather a lot of knitting, actually. Which, while not as effective as a Xanax with a Pinot Noir chaser, takes some of the edge off.

Given the rapidly approaching winter holidays, I did knit up rather a respectable stack of gifts.

From the bottom, that’s a Porom in Blue Moon Fiber Arts Peru and another in Knit Picks Andean Treasures, a Norie in Peru, a beanie in leftover Noro and Classic Elite Wynter from last year’s Christmas knitting, and some striped socks in Sophie’s Toes. I do enjoy the simple knits. I’ve got a Honey Cowl in some unknown silk handpaint from my stash on the needles now, and that’s been fun.

This blog started out as a knitting blog and I feel like it may be turning back into one. Which is fine because, that means knitting.

In other news, I’m a Postpartum Placenta Specialist now. Which means if you have a baby, you live in Southern California, and you want to have your placenta encapsulated you can call me, I’m your girl. It’s been a really nice thing to add on to being a labor and postpartum doula and I’m happy to be able to provide it to my clients.

Omg, hey, Captain Sexypants and I made it to Kansas and got married! He wore hand knit socks to say “I Do.” You know, like ya do when your wife is a knitter…


October… busy month!

October might be shaping up to be a little bit crazy! Along with getting married (!!!) and having a honeymoon, I’ll be attending the ProDoula Conference in Kansas City and expanding my professional world a little bit. So of course, October seems like the perfect time to schedule in (on top of folding 1001 origami cranes and crafting all the other wedding decorations) participating in a planner challenge. If you’re interested in playing along at home, the challenge is being hosted over on Instagram by @boho.berry, @prettyprintsandpaper, and @tinyrayofsunshine. You can find and follow at @PlanWithMeChallenge.

Because you definitely need to plan this much shit out.


I have to admit that I’m a little bit of a planner junkie, and finding the right system is something I’m always refining. I also really suck at sticking to it so I’m taking the next 90 days and focusing on making it a daily habit. Pretty sure my doula business, certifications, and other projects will thank me. Finding a planner setup that I like has been a slog. I’ve tried SO many planners (please don’t recommend any, I promise you that if it’s a popular planner on the market, it’s 99% sure that I’ve already tried it) and I think I finally found my Holy Grail system of both short and long term planning.

I’m a big fan of the Bullet Journal system but I absolutely suck at doing my daily planning in the BuJo because I get really distracted by all the things. I like going back to read collections and look at the shiny future planning and project tracking. Love the doodles and decorating and creative aspect you can work in if you choose. It’s really hard not to get enthralled by the shiny in my BuJo. Easier to migrate the details (like people’s birthdays) over to a smaller planner for the daily.

The Daily Action Planner is simple, doesn’t include a lot of fluff and nonsense, has monthly, weekly, and daily spreads, easy tabs, plenty of room for a daily brain dump, and no wasted space on things I don’t want. It is a nice A5 size, plenty of room but not too much room. This notebook lets me focus on taking action and accomplishing tasks in the short term and that’s super helpful.

Carrying multiple notebooks is a pain in the ass though, and to that end I love the idea of using a modular Traveler’s Notebook system to keep it under control. After much research, I’ve decided that the Chic Sparrow “Mr. Darcy (size A5, in burgundy)” is the best option to keep my DAP notebook, BuJo, and other smaller modules collected. I have promised myself that if I keep this up for 90 days, I get to buy Mr. Darcy as a reward in January.

After the apathy and depression and disorganization of the last few years, after the chaos of trying to run Honey&Ollie, work the Faire circuit, and get the doula thing off the ground, it feels good to feel like some of the brain fog is lifting. I guess some of us need a little external organizational assistance in our lives to get shit done.

And with a wedding in 2 and a half weeks, I have a LOT of shit to get done!



When I went through Effexor Hell about a decade back, I was so depressed I couldn’t leave my apartment. My marriage crumbled. My kids lost the best parts of their mother, for months. To call it a dark, and horrible time is a huge understatement.  I sat in our dark, roach-infested, crappy West LA apartment and tried to hold it together. And for 9 months, give or take a few, I did.

I folded 1000 origami cranes at some point, I don’t exactly remember when, or how I got the idea. I just know that in the darkest, most horrible time of my life, each tiny paper bird was a prayer. Each little string of paper birds represented another day of me choosing not to kill myself, a day I chose my kids, my life, and the light. The pile of paper birds grew and grew, and eventually the light shone back in. The medications that were causing me so much difficulty were straightened out by my doctor. I felt so much better.

I gave strings and strings of those birds away. A friend hung several hundred on the fence at Manzanar. They still hang cheerfully in friends’ cars, in their windows, in their houses; all those little prayers for salvation and light.  Yesterday I gave the last string of those paper birds away and kept just my favorite for myself.

It felt really good to let go of the last of them. I am grateful, every single day, that I chose to live. Life did get better.

I can’t say that things were the same after I got well. My marriage was still done. My kids still had to deal with the fallout of my illness. Financially, it was bad. But it kept getting better and if it wasn’t the same, it was at least a different kind of good. My kids grew up into resilient, sassy, smart young women. We moved to Casa Fabulous and did Faires. I met Captain Sexypants. Started a business. Made pretty things. Opened a store. Lost the store. Left LA. Got a grandbaby (best thing EVER!!). Moved back to LA.

Life went on and life is so full of things I’m glad I got to experience!

I won’t lie. Some weeks depression and anxiety come in uninvited, put their feet on my coffee table, and leave sticky messes in the kitchen. But they always leave again. We’ve learned to deal with each other a little better.

Exactly 2 3 (whoops! I am simultaneously relieved that we have more time, and omg it’s only 3 weeks from now… EEEEE!!!) weeks from today, I am going to stand up with Captain Sexypants and we are going to say some vows at sunset next to the Kansas lake he grew up at, and then we’ll be married. We’ve got rings and everything. I’m so happy, sometimes I’m afraid to admit it to myself.  I’m really happy. I’m a little bit afraid to say that, a little bit superstitious, a little afraid I’ll jinx it, but I think it’s okay to say it out loud.

Y’all, I’m really, really, really happy.

I was browsing Pinterest looking for DIY wedding decorations and ideas the other day (because what other kind of wedding decoration would the Cap and I have, this is us after all), and found some lovely pictures of weddings that used strands of origami cranes as decorations. “How lovely,” I thought. And then I thought, “How perfect.”

and I started to fold…

Each tiny bird, a prayer of thanksgiving for the light. For prayers answered. For my life. For the happy. For the life we get to build together.

They’ll hang from the rafters and from the poles of our huppah, those tiny little paper prayers of thanksgiving and blessing. Little wishes that, when times get hard, we hang in there, keep going, and keep loving each other.



How perfect.

125 tiny prayers down. 876 to go…

And I just want to say, reader… if you are in a dark place right now or if ever you find yourself there? If you are looking for the light and you just aren’t sure you want to stay here anymore?

I want to tell you, I hope you choose to live too. I promise it gets better. I hope you grab for the light with both hands and hang on tight until you’re held up again by the good people and good things around you.

I’m rooting for you.

So that happened.

Honey&Ollie Designs will be closing permanently, at the end of September 2016.


This was, in some ways, a really hard call to make. At the same time, when I got clear that this was the right step, it was a really easy call to make.

It’s hard to split your attention. You can’t really serve two masters. And some things deserve 100%.

I am choosing to focus – really focus – on my doula certifications and business. I have 3 certifications to finish by March, and a practice in a new city that needs my time and energy. I can’t have the kind of focus I need if I’m also running H&O – not with all the ‘back end’ that a business entails. Throw in production, design work, and shows, this is not a place where the power of “and” is going to serve me well.

Trying to do two things at once, in this case, means that neither is getting done well.

I’ve forgotten what making art for arts sake feels like. I’ve totally lost the joy of creating. Sitting down at the bench feels like drowning. I pick up a brush and nothing is there. Having the opportunity to create art – for myself – without the pressure to somehow create legitimacy by monetizing it or feeling pressured to turn it into “content” and stick it up for consumption, (though I do hope to share my process and results on this blog as it moves me), is something I want to explore.

I want making art to be a pleasure again.

The online shop will be open through the end of September. I’ll be putting up the last little bits of inventory between now and then and it will close for good, on October 1st.

It’s been a wild almost 7 years. I’ve had some amazing times and I’m so grateful for the support from you, my friends, customers and readers. Starting out, doing Crafted, moving to the Faire circuit, it’s been incredible, growthful, fun, at times painful and exhausting. I have no idea if I’ll come back to any of this. But I do know that the next stage is calling, and I can’t step into it fully with one foot in the new and one foot in the old.

Thank you for all your support over the years. I could not have had that wild ride without you.

Also, I hope you stick around. I’ll be maintaining this blog, but as a place to talk about art and fiber and process, not to talk about art I want you to buy.

F*ck “should.”

No really. Fuck it. Have you seen Elizabeth Gilbert’s amazing Facebook post today, about feeling the “wrong” emotion? If you haven’t, take a minute and go read it. I’ll wait.

This is one of the most powerful, truthful, naked things I have ever read and I spent a large chunk of it thinking, “Oh yes, me too. Yes. ”

My friends, listen: I want you to learn how to feel what you are feeling — not what you think you are SUPPOSED to feel, but what you ACTUALLY feel.

And I want you to guide your own life based on that, and only that.

Phew. Read that again. Go on. I’ll wait.

For the last couple of years I’ve been stuck on this idea. I am supposed to be “aging gracefully.”

And what’s more? That I’m supposed to LIKE IT.

I decided to “age gracefully” a few years ago. (Actually I think I was just feeling too lazy to go to the salon to get my roots done, and I constructed an elaborate scheme to make it okay. -ed)  Filling Pinterest boards with youthful looking, active ladies doing yoga, sporting sleek grey hair and skinny jeans, I decided to let mine grow out. I kept telling myself I was really happy with it. That yoga isn’t so bad. Truthfully?

My new grey hair was not sleek.  I can’t wear skinny jeans.

hate yoga.

The internet says that my 40’s are this powerful and amazing time of self knowledge, where all has been revealed. That’s the industry standard of aging, now. Your 40’s are supposedly the new 20’s (or some such bunk).  Well that’s not how my 40’s are feeling.

I am feeling the wrong emotion, y’all.

Definitely this decade has a leg up on my 20’s. I do feel a lot more at home in this skin overall. I’m more confident, that’s true. But I still feel like I’m just doing my best to figure it all out. Only now – in addition to staring into the unknown – my knees hurt, I can’t eat dairy and y’all, I am having a hard time embracing my saggy chin.

I recently read something that said how after 40, the training wheels come off. Boy howdy do they ever.

Shit gets real.

What’s real is? Time is marching. There is no time to waste on the wrong emotion, other people’s ideas, or  any “shoulds” that you bought into.  Fuck other people’s arbitrary rules about how we age. Fuck the elaborate facade of crunchy, natural womanhood. Or carefully polished, made up womanhood, for that matter. You do you.  I’m out, y’all. I missed my brightly colored hair, I missed lipstick, and I’ve really missed getting my eyebrows waxed. I’ll try being youthfully grey and all-natural in another ten or so, okay? I’ll try yoga again then too.

What’s real is, this is what we get.


I have Elizabeth Gilbert to thank (or blame) for this, btw.  I read her post this morning and decided to go all in with what I really wanted.

I’m so glad I did. Welcome back, baby. The insides match the outsides once more. I’m so happy!

Finally. I’m feeling the right emotion.

Oh yes! I’m back! The insides match the outsides, once again. Thanks to Lora at Studio C in Monrovia, CA

Btw, we packed up the cats, the yarn, the art studio and the books, and trundled back down to the land of swimming pools and movie stars a few weeks ago. Because, Reasons. Which means, that…

If you need an awesome labor or postpartum doula and you’re located in Southern California? You’re in luck! Call me! The San Gabriel Valley Doula!