My week in review

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So I had an idea for what I wanted to blog about today but it skitters away every time I go to write it. So let’s have some shameless self-promotion and a recap of some of my week.

Firstly, you may know that I crochet but did you know that I also design crochet toys?

‘Cause I do. And today I finally got around to sorting out some things with my Ravelry pattern store, so I’m celebrating with a week-long sale.

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No coupon codes needed, just buy one individual pattern and get one free. (There are 3 pattern collections which are not included.)

There’s even some patterns that are always free!

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So, go and download a freebie and if you like it, snag a couple of patterns cheaper than they usually are!

An update on the Brave the Shave campaign – I set my goal low to avoid disappointment and have been astounded by the response!

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I would love to see the amount raised reach £500. If you are able to donate, please do so. I am not able to touch that money and Macmillan are a genuine organisation. Please share the link if you are able to.

We all know someone who has had to deal with a cancer diagnosis – whether they were diagnosed or someone they are related to is diagnosed. Macmillan picks up where medicine leaves off whether the patient is still in hospital or at home, whether they will live or the cancer will take them from the living world.

Since my post on Tuesday, I received 3 new colouring books and determined, after looking through the stack of books that I already own, that I need to finish a few pages before I start anything new. I only made this determination on Friday but it means that I have added 6 finished pieces to my gallery this week alone.

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These are up on my Deviant Art gallery if you want a better look at them. If you haven’t been over there, I also have a zentangle gallery.

Lastly, I discovered an incredible series of mandalas for colouring on a website called Black & White Mustard. The best part, other than the mandalas themselves, is that they are free! So far there are 37 and yes, I have downloaded them all. The artist is Helsinki-based Maria Ljungeld. The first sentence on her ‘About’ page is ‘Drawing is my meditation, let colouring be yours!’ Her designs were a major factor in my seeking out better printer paper for colouring on and I hope to have a completed picture from her designs next week.

So, overall, I would say that I have had a good and positive week. It’s been a week since I shaved my head and I still love it. I even got to add to my colouring book and pencil collections!

By the way, this is what 300 pencils looks like…

300 pencils

(Yes, that is one of my dogs acting as a prop. She was mostly gracious about it but she can turning grumpy sighing into an Olympic sport!)

It is done.

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On Thursday, I signed up to participate in the ‘Brave the Shave‘ fundraiser for Macmillan Cancer Support with a goal of raising a very modest £150. The point of the campaign is to stand with cancer patients who have to shave their heads because of treatment. When I saw the ad for ‘Brave The Shave’, it really struck a chord with me.

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When I was 20, my mother was diagnosed with leukaemia and given 2 weeks to live. She beat the odds and is still with us 17 years later. I am so very grateful to the doctors, nurses, scientists; everyone who contributes to the treatment of those who have to go through cancer but I also know that the effects of cancer reach beyond medical treatment. Cancer patients – current and past – need emotional support, legal support, specialist nurses, work related advice, an advocate. Here in the UK, Macmillan specialises in this but they receive no government funding. With 2 in 3 people being effected by cancer either with a personal diagnosis or a family member being diagnosed, Macmillan are a vital part of treatment.

I set my goal low to avoid a renewed bout of depression if the goal wasn’t reached. I know that charity isn’t about the self but I also know my triggers and I can’t put my family through the bad feelings when I can avoid it.

The goal was reached on the day and continues to grow. Thank you to all the donators! And though I set my shave date for the 8th, reaching the goal made me impatient.

Guess what I did on Saturday.

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And I love it! As much as I loved brushing my hair, colouring it etc etc, I think I love this fuzziness even more.

I still have the hair though. I divided it up and put it in elastic bands to make cutting it off easier but I haven’t decided if I will just throw it away or spin it into yarn. The Victorians made an industry out of turning hair into keepsakes – making doll hair, keeping it in lockets, making jewellry, embroidery – and human hair is actually quite similar to some types of sheeps wool (google ‘Wensleydale locks’).

If you are able to, donations would be greatly appreciated. Even if you choose another charity, if you are able to, please give something if you can.