Goodbye May, Hello June!

Goodbye May, Hello June!

Green was the silence, wet was the light, the month of June trembled like a butterfly. — Pablo Neruda

Well, that was an odd May, wasn’t it? But it’s over and this morning June greeted me with a chill in the air, a brilliant sunrise, and a riot of Weigela blooms!

I reveled in #MeMadeMay all month long. And I have not stopped! This morning I emptied out my closet with the intention of downsizing to just me-made clothes. May also had a wide variety of weather, so I could wear flannels, wool, and yes, even sleeveless tops!

I made note of things that I “need” (okay…I am pretty sure I don’t really need anything, but I noted some items are well loved and often worn, so I have started a list of “makes” for the coming months.)


I tried to take a photo of “life” every day in May, but I was not successful every day and I have given up on 1 Second daily videos for the time being.


What is there to say… there was an awful lot of drinking in May and lots of staying home. However, we have gotten creative with Happy Hour – I am going to try and “take us out of Pittsburgh” with cocktail and food a couple times a month. Hopefully these “stay-cation” Happy Hours will feel different, since the surroundings sure as hell aren’t! Ha!

Also, when you can’t go anywhere you begin to notice other things, or at least I have. The greening of my neighborhood was truly a site to behold and May’s chillier temps made that greening up a gradual affair, rather than over and done with and for that I am profoundly grateful!

What did you notice about May? What was good? Bad? Better?

Friday Thoughts | 5.29.20

Friday Thoughts | 5.29.20

Another

Black

Body 

Shot.  — from Running For Your Life, a community poem

I heard this poem Wednesday on NPR. It made me cry and it made me unbelievably angry that I am cloaked in my White Privilege, in my nice home, not living in fear of law enforcement (aka those who believe it is “open season on black people” with absolutely no fear of repercussions for their actions.) If you have not listened to it, you should…


And as if Ahmaud Arbery was not enough.

Then came “Central Park Karen” and her actions against birdwatcher, Christian Cooper. . 

And then George Floyd. And please don’t give me “but the aftermath is so wrong” because I don’t know how what is happening in Minneapolis has not happened all over America on a daily basis.

Because today I learned about Breonna Taylor.

And I am really so over this. And not because I don’t want to hear about these murders – I am so over this because when will justice finally happen? When will racism die the death it needs to. How long will Jim Crow America still be Jim Crow America.

Even President Obama weighed in, “This shouldn’t be “normal” in 2020 America. It can’t be “normal.” If we want our children to grow up in a nation that lives up to its highest ideals, we can and must be better.” Yes we can and we must.

Sadly, there is not enough poetry in the world to fix this. But Keedron Bryant’s song and the community poem, Running for Your Life are providing me with words that are helping me to better understand.

And for that I am grateful.

 

Unraveled Wednesday | 5.27.20

Unraveled Wednesday | 5.27.20

Greetings Unravelers!

No Finished Objects this week, despite my planning that there would be! Enter a weekend of yard work and I was left with not much knitting time (and said yard work left me ready for bed! LOL)

So this week you get another progress shot of my Ranunculus.

Thank goodness audiobooks pair well with gardening! This week’s reads were fantastic, especially Drive Your Plow! IMO, this should have won the Man Booker award. I found it hard to stop listening – good thing I had all that yard work, lol.

Bingo One: Columbarium, Late Migrations, The Unquiet Dead, Smilla’s Sense of Snow, and The Hobbit. Bingo Two: The Hobbit, Eye of the Red Tsar, Drive Your Bones…, American Dirt, and Hot Milk

AND!! This week I have not one, but TWO bingo’s this week! I should have 2 more next week and I have mapped out the remaining books for this card! Summertime and the reading is so good! If you are looking for a square for multiple narrators, try the BBC production of The Hobbit! The cast is excellent! AND, looking for a “heard it on a podcast” book? NPR talked about Drive Your Plow in glowing terms (as did Kym!) I loved this quirky little book.

I have read  8 books this month and still have a couple of days to go, so maybe I can get to 9 books completed in May!

The Hobbit (Dramatised) by the BBCThe Hobbit (Dramatised) by the BBC by J.R.R. Tolkien
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

What splendid fun it was listening to the BBC cast! I picked this version to fill in a Summer Book Bingo square “more than one narrator” and this was really quite fun! I enjoyed it thoroughly!

Drive Your Plow Over the Bones of the DeadDrive Your Plow Over the Bones of the Dead by Olga Tokarczuk
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I’ve fallen in love with Mrs. Duszejko! She is incredible! Is this story a mystery? Is this story about animal rights? Is this story about astrology? Is this story about life and death? Is this story about grief?

Yes. Absolutely, yes!

I loved every bit of this wonderfully translated story. It is brilliantly written and the audio version was perfectly narrated. It made me stop, think, and think some more!

“You know what, sometimes it seems to me we’re living in a world that we fabricate for ourselves.
We decide what’s good and what isn’t, we draw maps of meanings for ourselves…
And then we spend our whole lives struggling with what we have invented for ourselves.
The problem is that each of us has our own version of it, so people find it hard to understand each other.”

I highly recommend this brilliant little story!

There you have my week…what about you? What things occupied you this week?

If you wrote a post to share, please leave your link below and thank you!


when INTENTION is all I have | May 2020

when INTENTION is all I have | May 2020

I am joining Honoré today and sharing my Little Word update for the month!

Live with intention. Walk to the edge. Listen Hard. Practice wellness. Play with abandon. Laugh. Choose with no regret. Appreciate your friends. Continue to learn. Do what you love. Live as if this is all there is. — Mary Anne Radmacher

I am positive that this was not the word I should have picked for 2020 because here we are closing out May, and my struggle with intention continues. This was absolutely not what I ever imagined when I settled in with a word for 2020 late last year.

Words like uncertainty, circumspect, and home-body seem like they might have been better word choices, but I am not a quitter – so onward with intention!

But Mary Anne Radmacher’s quote still beckons and this month Choose with no regret has become my daily mantra. And sometimes I was even successful!

  • All month long as areas began to “open up” I confidently elected to stay home.
  • We have a Primary Election next week so I applied for a mail in ballot… and sent it in.
  • I trimmed my hair.
  • I have not yet given myself a pedicure, but I have been using this delightful scrub regularly accompanied by a foot massage!
  • I wrote more, thought more, and read more.
  • I had long (and frequent) conversations with my kids…perhaps talking longer than we would in person!
  • I spent time knitting (of course) and practicing my meager crochet skills.
  • I wrote down little bits of gratitude every day, even when it was hard.
  • I also found myself back in the circle of grief, visiting stages I thought I was done with.

Choose with no regret was absolutely what I needed this month.

You can see my Intentional Journey here.

 

 

 

Friday Update, Photo Edition

Friday Update, Photo Edition

It’s been a quiet couple of weeks around here, at least until we went “Yellow” last Friday.

Yellow for my house looks a lot like Red. Unlike my neighbors, we are not racing out to dine in a restaurant, shop at the mall, or get our hair done. It will be interesting to see in the next few weeks if the cases in the county reflect the colossal stupidity I see happening all around me.

But enough with the rant, how about some distractions!

While I have been gone, I have been doing lots of thinking about this blog and how to make it feel fresh to me. Some ideas are percolating around, but nothing concrete yet. For the time being, I will continue stopping in here at least a couple days a week.

Yesterday, we had a swarm of special visitors (who were welcomed, admired, and applauded). This immense swarm of honey bees is festooning on our trimmed bushes waiting for the Bee Scouts to come back and direct them to the new location of their hive! Somewhere in that swarm is their Queen, who left her previous colony and took about half of her workers and set off to find a new place to live. In a week of absolute shit news, this swarm lifted my spirits. I did not know that swarming is evidence of a healthy bee colony…yep, they don’t swarm if they are sick! I wish you could see the size (and weight!!) of these bees – the size of the swarm is about 15″x10″ in size and they are weighing down the sturdy branches so much that they are resting on my neighbor’s chain link fence!

My iPhone does not quite do justice to the magnificence that these bees are!

As you can see above, sweater knitting is moving right along, I have divided for the sleeves and am now just mindlessly knitting body. I am hopeful to have this done by next Wednesday!

These past couple of weeks I have been mourning the loss of singing – specifically choir singing. The realization that there won’t be any choir, or singing in church (if and when ‘in-person’ worship resumes) makes me very weepy. Who ever thought that singing would spread germs faster…certainly not me. So I spent a good bit of time watching all the “separate but together” choirs on YouTube – and there are lots of them, but this one kind of sums of how I am feeling…

I also have been practicing with “the big camera” this week. However, the weather conditions were either too windy, too sunny, or today – too rainy!

Lamb’s Ear makes me smile

Even in the rain, they don’t let go of each other. There is a lesson here for all of us!

That is all I have for today. I will be back next week to share an update on my word next Tuesday with Honoré! Have a good weekend everyone!

 

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