The Benefits of Having Hobbies

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Photo Credit: 422737, Pixabay

Hobbies provide many benefits, including increased productivity in other aspects of your life, new friends, and even improvements in health. A hobby can also provide you with a break from a monotonous and stressful life. If you don’t have one, it might be a good time to consider taking one up.

Structure and Balance

A hobby helps you to structure your time by forcing you to spend it wisely. Knowing that
completing the task you’re working on frees up time for a hobby motivates your brain to work faster. Otherwise, without anything other than work to look forward to, your brain takes far longer to complete the same task. A hobby effectively boosts your time management skills. Schedule time for your hobby following work hours, and see if it makes a difference in your distractibility at work.

Having a hobby gives your life balance. When your only interests are your work and personal relationships (two aspects in life that tend to have ups and downs), you don’t have anything that gives you unfailing pleasure and stress reduction.

“Hobbies provide you with pride independent of the ups-and- downs that define your career and your interactions with loved ones,” says Business Insider. A hobby helps you prioritize a work- life balance.

Dreams and Friendships

While you may have once dreamed of becoming a famous actor, you’re probably not starring in the next Hollywood film. Hobbies allow you to pursue your passion in a more realistic setting.
Most people don’t end up working in their dream careers of acting, music, art, or sports. Having a good job doing something you like is great, but you probably still have that itch for your dream, and a hobby allows you to continue pursuing your dream on the side, whether it’s through a weekend improv group or a club sport.

Participating in a hobby gives you an opportunity to meet new people. Making a friend while participating in your hobby means you’re bonding over a shared interest. One study showed that we actually form friendships mainly because we have shared interests with individuals. Friends benefit your life in multiple ways – they help you live a longer and healthier life, help keep your mind sharp, and help you cope with life’s ups and downs.

Health

Maintaining a hobby helps to keep you healthy. Obviously, some hobbies provide physical activity, such as gardening and sports, but all hobbies exercise your brain, which boosts memory and cognitive abilities. Hobbies also combat stress, especially job-related stress. One study revealed that people with creative hobbies recover better from the demands of their jobs.
In fact, the researchers suggested that organizations should encourage their employees to participate in creative activities.

Stress wreaks havoc on your workplace productivity and is one of the biggest causes of lost productivity in the United States, costing companies more than $300 million every year. Even worse, stress also negatively affects your overall health. It can lead to headaches, fatigue, upset stomach, as well as issues with appetite and sleep. Stress can also lead to anxiety, depression, social withdrawal, and drug or alcohol abuse and addiction. If left unchecked, stress and its many side effects can contribute to other health issues, such as high blood pressure, heart disease, obesity and diabetes.

Schedule time for your hobby following work hours and see if it makes a difference in your distractibility at work. You’ll also benefit from its stress-relieving capabilities, and you may even meet a new friend. If you don’t already have a hobby or interest, just try out something new.
You’ll never know if you enjoy baking or pottery unless you give it a try.

Article contribute by: Maria Cannon
Ms. Cannon believes we’re never too young to dedicate ourselves to a hobby. She created HobbyJr to encourage young people to find a hobby they love.

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Pattern Test for Sweet Potato 3 Patterns – 07

The latest Pattern Test that I did for Sweet Potato 3 Patterns was the Plum Perfect Footed Leggings. These cute little things come in 11 different sizes! That’s right, I said 11! This means that everyone in your family can have a pair!
Infant/Toddler Sizes: 0-3 Month / 3-6 Month / 6-12 Month / 12-24 Month
Child Sizes: 3T-4T / 5-8 Years / 9-12 Years
Teen & Adult Sizes: Small / Medium / Large / X-Large

They also have the option of doing either a plain legging.

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Or, you can add the attached foot part on it!

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Wouldn’t this be perfect for dance class or just lounging around?!
Another fun thing about this project is made with a fun new stitch! I LOVED doing this stitch and it was totally faster then doing a straight up single crochet stitch.

You can get this pattern here: RavelryEtsy | Craftsy
Make sure you head over to her Fan page too! Sweet Potato 3 Patterns

Fall Mystery Create-a-long

This project has been done for awhile now but I still had to share the process with everyone!

For this project I use Vanna’s Choice… it’s a yarn that I have never used before but Melody said that she recommended it. So, I just had to give it a try.

I loved the colors that they have available and it was actually hard to decided on what two colors that I wanted to use. I ended up picking a nice neutral earthy color called Linen and I paired it with a deep Burgundy color. These two colors totally made me think of fall.

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Aren’t they just beautiful?!

The first Segment that was sent out was a rather quick one. A simple little flower. Hmm what could it be for?

I chose to do it in the burgundy color. This will be used for all of the accent parts of the project. So, that means I will be using the linen color for the bulk of the project.

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The 3rd segment added the main color to the flower. Yup! I can say that I like this color combination.

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Back to the accent color for the 3rd segment. This is looking pretty cute! I just love the added border. Still not sure what we might be making, what do you think?

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Segment 4 she had us go back to the main color. This was a little tricky since we were working behind the “border” that we created in the last segment.

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I bet you guessed what segment 5 was… had to add the trapezoid shape to the other side of the piece. It kind of reminds me of the top of a bib maybe….

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With Segment 6 we added the “body” part. Now it’s starting to look like something. It’s definitely something that a little girl wears around their chest area!

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Wonder what we will be adding for Segment 7…

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Looks like the start of a little skirt!

The rest of the segment just had you add more length to the piece. I had decided to change it up a little and added in some color. For the bottom row, Melody had us add the same border that we added to the flower piece at the start of the Mystery Create-a-long.

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Here is the picture of my finished piece! I just love how it looks as I am sure you can tell by the strings.

You can buy this dress pattern in either crochet or knit by clicking the links below!

Autumn Lovin’ Dress – Crochet | Knit

You can check out all that Melody has to offer here:
Facebook | Ravelry | Blog | Etsy

Breaking in the New Year!

Hello everyone! I don’t know about you, but this year has started off pretty good for me so far! We had our 3rd little girl in August so everyday is awesome with her. It’s so fun getting to see her grow, learn new things, meet milestones and just do day to day things. So now we have Miss M, Miss S and another Miss S. But I will be referring to her as Baby S.

I agreed to be an Assistant Admin for Melody’s Makings Facebook Group. I am helping out with her Mystery Create-A-Longs. Her first one of the new year just started this past Tuesday. She has sent out the first segment and will be sending out the second one tomorrow. Everyone’s projects have been coming out very well! I love seeing everyone’s projects and seeing all of their guess as to what it is they are making.

Here is a link to her Facebook page so you can sign up for it and join a long if you want. She offers it in both a knit and crochet version. This months is free to join! She has gotten a lot of new people to sign up for it… and everyone seems to be having fun.

Melody’s Makings Facebook

I have a few projects that I am working on; two blankets, a dress and a pattern test for Sweet Potato 3. I will be sure to share them with you when I have everything finished. What a great start so far!

How has everyone else been doing so far to start?

Sweet Potato 3: Cancer Challenge

Image provided by Sweet Potato 3

Christine over at Sweet Potato 3 Patterns has announced that she is doing her Cancer Challenge again this year! This awesome challenge with a really great cause will be going on during the whole month of October!

She had some awesome designers taking part in the challenge last year and I am sure this year will be no different! All you have to do is commit to making the patterns that the designers have so graciously donated to this cause and donate them to cancer patients in need. (I know her pattern is one you wont want to miss, I was lucky enough to test it for her! So, look for that post coming as well.)

This is something that you will not want to miss out on! So, be sure to check back here and on Christine’s fan page below to get in on the fun!

Fan Page | Blog

Melody’s Makings has announced her Fall 2015 Mystery Create-a-long!

Photo Credit: From Melody’s Makings

My friend Melody over at Melody’s Makings has announce that she is doing another Mystery Create-a-Long and I could not be more excited!! I have done a couple of the Create-a-Longs that she has offered and they have all been super fun!

Your probably wondering why it’s a Create-a-Long instead of a Crochet or Knit a-Long. Well, that is because her Mystery projects are offered in BOTH Crochet and Knit! Isn’t that awesome?!

I feel that this allows the participants to really learn from the project while they have fun with it. You can ask for help if you are not sure on how to work up one of the sections that she posted. If she isn’t available at the exact moment that the question is asked, you still have plenty of help from all of the people that are also working it up with you! How awesome is that? So, why not take advantage of this time and try to expand your skills as either a crocheter or a knitter.

She breaks down the project into very easy sections to complete in the time frame that she assigns to each section. But it’s okay if you fall behind, because it’s easy to catch up… just try not to peek at what everyone else is posting… Or you might find out what you are working up before you want to. It is a Mystery, so you wont know what the project is until you are finished!

She was nice enough to post some sneak peaks so, you can start your guessing right away!

Melody’s Makings – Crochet Mystery Create-A-Long Fall 2015

To go to the Crochet version of this Mystery Create-a-Long click here.

Melody’s Makings – Knit Mystery Create-A-Long Fall 2015

To go to the Knit version of this Mystery Create-a-Long click here.

You can find all of the information for this awesome event hosted by Melody’s Makings below!

Melody’s Makings
Facebook / Blog / Ravelry / Etsy / Craftsy

Big Announcement here at Crafting Mommy of Two!

So, I am sure that you have all noticed that my posting has been rather slow for this past (almost) year. And well, I happen to have a good reason as to why. I have been holding onto this little tidbit of information because I wanted to announce it at the right time.

Well, I finally decide that this was as good time as any to finally tell you all! This Crafting Mommy of Two will transforming into a Crafting Mommy of THREE! Yup, you ready that correctly! I have been baking this little bundle of joy for the past nine months and she is due to arrive on the 15th of this month! Crazy, to think that she is due just a couple of days from now! Crazy! Crazy!! Crazy!!!

I had a super fun and awesome Mommy & Me: Maternity photo shoot with my good friend Courtenay Bickler! I just had to share some of the photos with you!

I just love all three of these pictures! It was so hard to go through and choose which pictures I wanted to keep from the ones that she took. Courtenay really captured the love that my girls and I have for each other as well as for the Tiny Dancer in my belly. We just can’t wait to meet her!

If you want to check out Courtenay’s work please check out her Website and Facebook Fan Page!

Courtenay Bickler Photography
Website / Facebook Fan Page