“The month of August had turned into a griddle where the days just lay there and sizzled.” ― Sue Monk Kidd, The Secret Life of Bees
Yes, this quote perfectly sums up what August was for me…a month of sizzling, never ending heat. By months end, my gardens were all looking rather fried. We did have some significant rainfall that made all the weeds leap to life seemingly overnight, but do you think I did any weeding? Yeah, that would be a big N-O, lol.
We also found ourselves at the six month mark of Pandemic times. My state went on “lock down” on March 15, but my house started at the beginning of March. The days have a familiar rhythm and it is hard to think back to what “life before COVID” was like. It almost seems like another lifetime ago. But some of the changes are so very good. I feel like a smarter shopper now, with a major shop about every 3 weeks. Yes, I pick up “fill in” items… veggies and fruits. But my garden provided loads of fresh beans, some incredibly delicious orange peppers, and a plethora of tomatoes. And all that helped reduce the “extra trips” out.
But some of these changes are just very bad, there is no way to sugar coat not seeing my kids and while I am extremely thankful for FaceTime, texting, and phone calls… it is really not a substitute for being together in person. It pains me to say that this will likely be “reality” at least through the end of this year and it is the thing that makes me the most depressed.
The Best Part of the Month
This, ironically, was not something I did… but rather something Vivi’s chicken did! Yes, one of those Easter chicks laid its first egg! There was much joy and excitement in this feat and it might have been one of the best photos I got all month!
Zoom Knitting seems to be here for the duration, and this month we finally got “smart” (yes, even knitters can take 6 months to get their act together!) One of our members had moved away, and we finally figured out a day and time that worked for everyone, her included! So Knit Night now seems like one of the best things as hearing her escapades again make for some much needed laughter. No one tells a story quite like Julia does!
Best “Oh, Wow” Moment/s
The August skies absolutely came through with the “Oh, Wow” factor! And they reminded me that looking up is always a good idea! They kicked “ho hum” mornings in the pants! And for those “end of the day” moments… well sometimes they provided that last needed thing for my daily gratitude list.
What I did Well and What I can do Better
Sadly, August had no “I did this well” moments. But boy do I have a list of things I can do better. While there are no photos here, August was a month that I learned the hard way that my opinion not something anyone needs… ever. I read some of the best reminders of this on your blogs this month… along with the reminder that there is no prize for martyrdom. Oy. There is a part of me that is very, very glad August is over… and with it, hopefully, my incredible talent for being the truly most obnoxious ass in North America. My goal for September centers around this quote:
Thinking doesn’t hurt. Words DO. — Anna Maledon
And that is my August… even the not so pretty parts. See you all back here on Wednesday!
A brief dip into autumnal temperatures were enough to spur me on to pick up my Evening Dew Cardigan and a bit of knitting over the weekend while watching The Peanut Butter Falcon and an episode or two of Silent Witness and I find myself less than one repeat away from the bottom ribbing! I am stunned that it still looks (and feels) like I have barely used any of the Briar Rose Fibers Angel Face! (sadly, this yarn is now discontinued, I think Sea Pearl would work well in this sweater, especially with a strand of mohair!)
I am also ready to start arm decreases on the vest for Winston! But, I am a bit concerned about the size so I am waiting for my daughter to give me a measurement before going further…knitting holding pattern FTW. lol
Fortunately, my reading has not been in a holding pattern at all! This is the week that I achieved a coverall on my first SAH Bingo Card! I listened to a version of The Hobbit earlier this summer, and it was good, but nothing compares to reading Bilbo’s tale. I had previously read the book the summer I was 12 years old… and I fell in love with dear Bilbo and Gandalf. Imagine my delight in discovering that 47 years later The Hobbit was still just as magical!
My 25 books from card one:
Collection of Poetry: Columbarium
Originally published in the 20th century: The Hobbit
Recommended by a friend: 10 Thousand Doors of January
Borrowed: Shadow Pass
Set in the state where you live: An American Childhood
Bird or animal on the cover: Late Migrations
About religion: Entering the Passion of Jesus
Classic: The Mill on the Floss
Collection of essays: New Poets of Native Nations (okay, loosely essays, but absolutely a collection!)
Best-seller: Say Nothing
By a new-to-you author: The Unquiet Dead
Debut: On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous
Any book (free square): The Spendid and the Vile
Set in a place you’d like to vacation: Mourning in Malmö
Number in the title: Victim 2117
Translation: Smilla’s Sense of Snow
Originally published in the 19th century: Leaves of Grass
Comfort Read: Tartine Bread (literally, a comfort food read!)
Retelling: The Crane Wife
Memoir or autobiography: Dept. of Speculation (again, loosely, but a memoir was how this read for me)
Audiobook with multiple narrators: The Hobbit, presented by BBC Radio
Sub-title on the cover: Eye of the Red Tsar: A Novel of Suspence
Recommended on a podcast: Drive Your Plow Over the Bones of the Dead
Chosen by a celebrity bookclub (at any time): American Dirt
About a person with a disability: Hot Milk (The main character did not have a disability, but her mother did)
This was a book I could not stop listening to. What astounded me most was how this book written a lifetime ago, was unbelievably relevant today… scarily so. That made me so sad, that nothing has changed. Ellison writes a compelling story that seems so realistic. I highly recommend this audio version, the narrator – Joe Morton – was fantastic. I highly recommend this book!
In “Pandemic Times” and no traveling, pick up this book an take a journey to Paris. Lebovitz’s Parisian escapades are a balm to a shelter-in-place spirit. From learning French, to visiting a doctor, to discovering the local flavors… it gives the reader a feeling of being there, in the best way!
And with the above two finishes, I am left with just two books to complete my second coverall! Those books? Wind in the Willows, which I am reading at night and am about half way through and Stuart Little, which I should be finished with later today! That will put me at 50 books read since Book Bingo started way back in April!
How about you? Is your project in a holding pattern? Is your reading exceedingly good? What are you excited about for the fall to bring?
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Oh boy. It has been a very hard week. A week that took an already dismal month and ramped it up by about 1000% and while I am thankful that Jacob Blake survived, I am so angry that there was an incident which put that in question. And, I can’t even be sane about 17 year olds with assault weapons walking away unscathed. So I spent lots of time this week listening. Listening to the pain. The hurt. The eloquence. The raw emotion.
And then a cascade of events began to happen, starting with the Milwaukee Bucks! And I say GO BUCKS (except, it’s not a boycott… they are striking, boycotting is what the viewer would do, but okay) (and Hurrah to the NBA for standing with the Bucks!) Rapidly many other sports players followed suit – MLB and MLS, WNBA, and yes…even a tennis player… I say BRAVO!! Perhaps you are not a sports fan, but my hope is that this will finally be the tipping point for monumental change.
The Milwaukee Bucks have decided to boycott Game 5, source tells ESPN.
And that beautiful note ushers in the rest of the good things this week:
This past Tuesday, Ali Smith’s Summer dropped and I am number eight on the library wait list. I can’t wait, especially after reading this excellent review! I have loved this brilliant series, and if you were waiting for them all to be available… your wait is over. Start with Autumn and move through the seasons. They are just brilliantly written and eerily timely!
The September issue of Vanity Fair is a special project, called The Great Fire and it has grabbed my attention. The guest editor is Ta-Nehisi Coates, and it is a must-read issue. His editor’s letter is powerful, stirring, and so painfully true: “And so evil does its business in the shadows, ever-fearing not the heat of the Great Fire but the light. To clearly see what this country has done, what it is still doing, to construct itself is too much for any human to take. So it was with the slave narrative. So it is with the cell phone.” I broke down and bought a subscription this week and the reading that I have done thus far is incredible!
And because we all could use something to escape…coming September 23rd to Netflix… Enola Holmes! I.can’t.wait! (Yes, it is starring Eleven from Stranger Things!)
For all the Vera fans out there, Ann Cleeves shared that there will be a season 11 of Vera! Wahoo!
**A warning, this link goes to a Ravelry project page** In my never ending Ranunculus love… this one here has me rethinking the idea that I have finished Ranunculus knitting! Oh my, I love her sleeves! Yep, a third Ranunculus is being considered!
And, finally!! Isabell Kraemer has released a pattern that I have been oogling on Instagram! (Yes, I purchased it!)