Yarn Love Challenge & Introductions

In February, I participated in the Yarn Love Challenge and shared pics every day based on their prompts. I’ve realized I’ve gotten a few new followers on social media and on the blog because of it. So I thought I’d take this as an opportunity to introduce myself to you all (and again to some of you who have been here forever) and let you introduce yourselves to me! I’ve linked to some of the Instagram posts and blog posts that are relevant to this little introduction and I welcome you to share a bit about yourselves in the comments too (share you social, Rav ID, blogs, I want to hear it!).
BW me
My name is Dana and I started this blog in June of 2015 after taking a hiatus from blogging (my old blog The Art of Accessories/I Am DWJ is still around if you want to browse what I used to talk about). My father passed away that March 2015 after a long fight with pancreatic cancer and I needed something to bring back some joy into my everyday life. Knitting is my joy and  what I wanted to share and that’s how this blog was born. I pretty much live by the mantra, Choose Joy. I make choices and decisions in life based on what I want to do, not what I feel like I’m being pressured to do or what other people want from me. I do what makes me happy and when I find myself not happy I choose to make changes. I choose joy because sometimes you have to make a conscious decision to do that when life is hard. I hope that what I share here reflects that way of thought and  when I don’t feel joyful I don’t post. I think you can tell what brings joy to my life by what I share: knitting, family and dogs.
Johnson family 2016
I’ve been married for almost 14 years to a guy who tolerates all my yarn hoarding and even remodeled a bedroom in our house to be an awesome craft room. We don’t have children of our own but we do have two dogs I’m obsessed with. Cher is a 12 year old Chihuahua Pug Mix and Jellybean is a 4 year old 5lb Chihuahua. Both are rescues and they make coming home every day a delight. My Instagram stories are filled with their antics and they’re the best snugglers while I’m knitting in the evening.
I learned to knit in the spring of 2011 taking a class at a local yarn shop in DC. It took about a month or so before it all clicked and then I was hooked. But in the beginning I wanted to vomit every time I tried to knit. I’m a bit intense sometimes and the Virgo in me wants to get things right and perfect even on a first try. Once I learned how to relax and just knit a new world opened up to me.
I am always knitting and thinking about my next project. I knit A LOT. You can read a recap on 2016’s projects here but I knit 25 sweaters in a year on top of other projects last year. I think that’s why so many people ask me to make them things but again…I knit on my on timeline. My favorite color is green but in all honesty I just love all color. The brighter the better and any opportunity to combine 2 or more colors is a perfect project to me.
Self portrait
I should also mention I’m a Digital Strategist by day and an adjunct professor at Howard University teaching Social Media Marketing. So social media is the thing that I think about the most and I also blog because I make my students do it and I like to stay on top of what’s new and happening. But I also love the community around knitting and yarn. I’ve met (online and in person) some pretty amazing people because of things I’ve shared on the internet. So this is me, Dana, in a nutshell. Oh and I like to take pictures where my mouth is wide open…a lot. It just makes me laugh.

So please, tell me a little bit about yourself too! Oh and ask questions as well. I’m happy to answer them. And if you’re new to Yards of Happiness, welcome.


14 Replies to “Yarn Love Challenge & Introductions”

  1. I didn’t know you were a Virgo! Both my son and ladyfriend are Virgos; that must be why we got on so well when we met. You already know about me, but everyone should know about you. I’m lucky to have met you in person, and I’m constantly amazed by your creative output! And Jellybean and Cher are too cute.

    1. Yup, I’m a late August Virgo. And I know 4 other people with the same birthday, different year and we’re all crafty!! One of my girlfriends who we vacation with is an awesome sewer, she made the custom collars for Jellybean and Cher and so I knit her stuff. We try to outcraft each other every time we see each other.

  2. hello dana, I have been reading you for over a year now and I LOVE THIS AND YOU!! you are the most inspiring person not just in knitting but in life.. I want to be like you when I grow up..lol.. although I am 61 so growing up is maybe a lost cause. I learned to knit in 4th grade with my sister from a teacher who gave lessons once a week.. I dabbled in the craft off and on then quit then my sister opened a yarn shop about 20 years ago and I was a knitter again full steam ahead!! it was hard to resist all that yummy yarn she stocked so thru the years my stash is a little embarrassing then she closed shop 8 years ago and moved so I did inherit some more yarn. I live in southwest pa and have 3 grown kids and 5 grandkids ages 10 months to 10 and they are the most recipients of my knitting and they love it still.. it is so great to knit for kids as most at this age love grammy gifts. I have retired as of 4 years ago and am a knitting fool. the kids live in ohio north pa and tenn so I travel to visit often. I love going to yarn festivals and shows and read many knitting blogs. my sister and now my 30 something daughter share this love of the craft, my daughter has become a much better knitter than me and is always trying something new. I knit a lot for the grandkids and just lately have made things just for me, about time I guess. I am currently working on a swancho which is almost done and a cape from a Maggie Jackson pattern kit. both are fairly easy knits just large and time consuming. the youngest grandbaby has many hats, booties and a couple sweaters for now..lol there is a festival in pitts pa the end of this month where we are taking a class of knitting a sock within a sock.. will be interesting how that goes.. lol.. thanks for being you and posting.. keep on knitting!!!


    1. Debbie, your life sounds pretty awesome! Is it bad I’d like to retire by the time I’m 40 (so a year and a half from now) just so I can knit more? LOL Oh and my work knitting buddy Lavon (she comments here a lot too) knows how to knit a sock within a sock. She makes that stuff look so easy!

  3. This is a terrific post. Your knitting skyrocketed once you learned the basics. I’m an early September baby so a Virgo as well. I love what Pinterest has about Virgos; some are so true about me.

    1. I’m very much a very. I’m a super picky, opinionated and at times a neat freak. It drives my husband just a little crazy.

  4. Also a Virgo! I love the joy in your projects and your photos-I always treat photographing my projects as an obligation, not an opportunity. So you’re inspiring me to try a new approach

    1. I took pics for my old blog and I love taking photos with a camera and not just my cell phone (although in a pinch it will do). I like to share and I think so many people tackle the same pattern in such different ways it’s really cool to see each interpretation.

  5. Love love love your knitting & puppy & family posts – add an obsession with knitting podcasts, audiobooks, Star Wars, Star Trek, and The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy – and you have me! I’m a JK-1 resource room teacher with a 16 year old son, 12 year old daughter, Boston Terrier who will be 14 on St. Patrick’s Day, 10 year old PooChon (poodle/bichon). I have a sizable stash that my DH built me a cabinet for, although I don’t think he knows other places in the house that I tuck it away. I’ve enjoyed seeing your posts and looking through your projects – in fact you have inspired me to seriously tackle and finish more than one sweater this year… at least, that’s the goal. 😉 I’m HobbyCollector on Ravelry and b.mortinsen on Instagram.

    1. Okay, now I want to see this PooChon. LOL I love these silly names for mixed breeds. Cher is a chihuahua pug so you can call her a Chug or a Pihuahua LOL. I love it.

  6. Hi Dana I found you on Ravelry when I looked at finished projects of the Trail Jacket by Hannah Fettig. I love the way you styled the jacket in your photos.

  7. Hi Dana. I just discovered your blog while browsing Ravelry notes for the Angelina Pullover. You are an awesome knitter and you have inspired me to knit my first sweater. I look forward to reading your blog. I have always loved crafting with fiber and after I retired I have gotten into other projects (glass, pottery and weaving). The next time you are in Memphis give me a shout and we can share pics of our yarn stash. 😀

  8. Hi Dana! I just discovered your Instagram and blog through a blogger I read regularly, Wardrobe Oxygen. I’m just blown away but your amazing knits and joyous personality! I looking forward to following along and can’t wait to see what you create next!

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