March 1st 2021 Ontario, Ca

Happy March!

March is a month, I looooovvveeee! Selfishly and completely bias as it is my birth month, but truthfully I love it for so many other reasons.

Like its Women’s History Month, with International Women’s Day being March 8th and Craft month!

I also feel like as a born and raised Cali girl, this is one of the last “Winter” months where the temperature is cool, with sunny skies right before we head into spring weather and scorching temps.

But let’s go back to being a little selfish and talk about my birthday, more specifically something I want for my birthday!

I have always wanted to host a beach clean up for my birthday, unfortunately that isn’t a possibility this year due to COVID, but after this panaderia is over I really hope to host one every year for my birthday.

So even though we may not be able to all gather and clean up a beach, I figured we could still do it “virtually” and socially distanced from the comfort of our own home/neighborhood.

The idea and goal is simple, pick/clean up an area such as a park, or even your street, or heck your sidewalk or neighbors sidewalk, etc. wherever you see trash on the floor. Whether that be on your daily walk, like me, or a trip to the park with your kids, or the parking lot of your local Target or shopping center. *Please be safe when doing this, do NOT pick up trash with your bare hands, or hold trash in hands. Use gloves and/or a grabber tool/pick-stick and use a trash bag. Have hand sanitizer with you and wash hands once done.

I remember the first day I decided to do this on my walks, I was so disheartened and surprised at how much trash was at my neighborhood park. I had my bag half way filled before I even arrived at the park, and once I began my lap around the park I had filled it up within the first come of minutes. It saddened me to see this place filled with trash, I was upset that I had not properly prepared and brought a larger bag. It opened my eyes, it made me realize that even though the park and our streets “looked” clean while driving by that wasn’t actually the case. It sparked something in me to want to continue doing this on my walks. So now I’m prepared when I go out every morning, I wake up excited to go and do my small part. That is what this journey is about, making small changes/actions that can lead to big impacts.

My hope with this virtual clean up is that it may encourage or even spark that same desire to continuously do this.

If you do choose to participate, please share a pic on Instagram and tag me @jloveknits and use the hashtag #jloveknitsvirtualcleanup. Those who participate and tag me + use the hashtag will be entered in my birthday giveaway which will be posted on my instagram later this week with the full details.

Sending so much love & light to y’all!

xo- Jay ♥️

Jessica, aka Jay.

My name is Jessica, but I like to go by Jay or simply “J”. I am a 28 year old Latinx small business owner, who hand makes reusable eco-friendly items, but I’m also much more than that.

I started JLOVEKNITS in 2012/13 on Instagram to showcase my handmade knitted and crocheted goods. I began this craft journey as a way to gift friends and family members presents during the holidays, birthdays, etc. I was a broke college student working PT and my family was recovering from the financial crisis of 2007-2008 (thinking back to those days still triggers me sometimes but that’s a post for another day).

I sorta kinda forgot about my business Instagram only to restart it in the winter of 2017 (after yet again recovering from some personal issues) but this time I was making it all. Candles, beanies, scarves, Cricut crafts, you wanted it, I made it anything to help supplement my income and to fill my time.

It wasn’t until 2018 when I finally found my purpose, making cute and affordable REUSABLE ITEMS. You’ll also get to hear more about how this journey all got started if you keep following.

It has been two years since I rebranded JLOVEKNITS from handmade knitted and crocheted goods to handmade eco-friendly alternatives. Along this journey I have found personal, financial, and emotional growth & success. It hasn’t always been easy, and trying to balance building a business, keeping up with a fiancé and home life, and the occasional bouts of anxiety can feel overwhelming at times but the support I have received from my peers, *community, family, and friends has helped make this journey worthwhile.

  • I really don’t like using the words “followers” and “supporters” because those words feels too impersonal and snotty for me, which is why I tend to say “community” instead because honestly the love and support that has been sent my way goes far beyond what a “customer/follower” is)

So if you already follow me on IG then you already know I can be what some might consider an “oversharer” for being a business page. I always knew I wanted to create a blog where I could openly share my life, not because I think my life is so great or because I want to boast about it. But because I feel like sharing, story telling, and writing has always been a great form of expression for me. It has always felt like a set in the right direction towards healing. Journaling has been a love of mine since I was a young girl, it helped put down the words of my heart and soul on paper. It was where I would write out what I wish I could say out loud, in hopes that there were others out there feeling or going through the same thing so I didn’t feel so alone or so that I could share in my excitement with. This blog has been in the making for a long time. If only I could have found the courage I now have today. I let fear and self doubt keep me from pursuing this.

I was riddled with pesky little thoughts “who would care”, “why bother”, “your not interesting”, “what about the meanies of the internet”, etc. But as I continue to grow I have come to let go fear and self doubt, and I have decided to say, stop worrying about what others might think, stop letting fear dictate what you do and don’t do. I have come to a point where my biggest fear is not doing this and letting myself down.

And to those who maybe wondering why not just get a journal and keep it private? Well, I honestly have enjoyed sharing my personal journey, business experience, setbacks, and more with my community on IG and finding so many that can relate on there that I feel compelled to continue to share my journey on here where I’m not as restricted or confided to a single square and 2,200 character caption. That this blog too continues to grow to be a place where we all find community and perhaps a place where you feel seen.

I plan on continuing to share more in depth personal experiences, lifestyle tips, and of course shamelessly promote my little baby, my business JLOVEKNITS. This blog (and a book) was something that even as a kid I knew I would do, well actually as a kid I had no idea what a blog was, but I don’t know why or how I knew at such a young age that I would share my story.

My hope is that if this blog finds you that it may inspire, bring hope, joy, or even just laughter, or that you may feel like you’ve stumbled upon a relatable virtual amiga.

xo- Jay