Though it pains me to say it, welcome to the final Wednesday in October. I am in a bit of shock that the month raced by as rapidly as it did.
This week, I have practically nothing on the knitting front to share… nary a stitch was knit on that sweater but I did start a pair of Socks for Big Foot… from handspun… and I am loving the start! (Big Foot has seen them and so I can share a photo here! lol) I am not using a pattern…I started out by casting on 72 stitches, but that was too big so I ripped it out and tried 68 stitches which was still too big… rippppp again! I settled on 64 stitches and that was just right! Who knew Big Foot and Goldilocks were related! LOL
The other thing I did was some spinning this weekend… it was rainy, dark, and cold. So I queued up Granchester on my PBS app and started the “engine” on my Daedalus Sparrow. I finished As Natural as Aspartame and while I waited for that last bobbin to rest, I started spinning this! Oh man, is it lovely fiber…Buoy in Seafoam from Hipstrings. I am stunned that I got an entire 4 ounces on one bobbin. I have not started this next braid, but I am eager to get going on it!
On Monday afternoon, my treat for finishing my “list” was to ply the pinkish-purplish yarn. It was the first time I plied anything on my Sparrow and I am in love! Once I got the hang of it, the ONLY thing I had to think about was how much twist was going into the yarn. No treadles to count, no concerns about treadle speed changing… I set the speed and plied. I need more practice on starting and stoping while plying, and evenly filling the bobbin but I am a convert to an electric spinner! I got some excellent yardage as well… 376 yards of 3-ply yarn! I see a pair of socks for me in my future!
A slow reading week…but some very good reads! And I am *almost* done with Suzanne Simard’s book, Finding the Mother Tree. I am not rushing through it… it is just so fascinating!
The Devil’s Cave by Martin Walker
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Bruno is back with the perfect mystery for October! There are some mysterious goings on in St. Denis and fortunately, Bruno is there to gather clues. He has a new pup, which makes me happy… and he is trying to figure out his personal life.
I love solving these crimes with Bruno… Walker unveils them bit by bit. And, the ambiance of St. Denis with it’s quirky inhabitants, and delicious food and wine… it is the most lovely place to settle into for a bit!
Three Sisters by Heather Morris
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
This is the third book in The Tattooist of Auschwitz story, and while there is a brief interlude with Lale, the book is really about three sisters – Cibi, Magda, and Livia – and their lives. It is a compelling story and while the horrors of Nazi Germany are part of the story, but really the story is about the relationships of these sisters and the promise they made to their father.
The story is beautifully told, poignant, and a compelling listen. (Excellent narration by Finty Williams, by the way!)
I loved how this story went far beyond the concentration camps to their immigration to Israel and their lives there. I highly recommend this story!
I want to thank NetGalley and Macmillan Audio for an arc of this novel in exchange for my honest review.
What about you? What has captured your attention this week? A good book? A great pattern? Please share!
As always, if you wrote a post to share please leave you link below!
I am unbelievably ready to release release and because that is all I could think about this month… I have begun thinking about my word for next year and some amazing possibilities are floating around over here! There is nothing like the excitement of a new word…not that I want the year to be over or anything… okay, maybe I do! lol
This was a very “loose” month for my word and me… I did not even look at Carolyn’s prompt for us this month! I felt about 3 minutes worth of guilt over this and stopped myself… October was so full of things I wanted to ADD to my life, I simply released that guilt and moved on. It is okay to “miss a month” for things that have been long anticipated! (Visit with my grands, AUTUMN, and yes… life!)
I really feel “done” with this word… on so many levels and the thought of spending another two months with it is a bit agonizing. On one hand, I feel a bit like an empty vessel… and I am feeling anxious and wanting to hold on to something…what I don’t actually know, but it is there, hovering around the edges…waiting (see above!!)
The good things though: I very much recognize that I have become more adept at keeping things put carefully away inside me, which is just so darned good! Those things are not rising to the surface on their own. I know they are there, but I am in control. And today, I think that is a huge improvement!
But as much as I am ready to move on from release, there are still things I need to
get rid of release. Things I put off because summer is not a time to spend indoors in boxes, closets, and those pesky junk drawers. And summer is well over and the weather is even cooperating…a forecast of a week of rain is just what I need for me to resume the Great Big Release project.
So I did some “mapping” this weekend and I am happy with my plan. First up, making the shift (finally!!) from my summer wardrobe to a wardrobe for cooler days! The in-between days have created some havoc and putting things away will solve that! As for the rest… well, it will be a bit more complicated to deal with but if I do a little bit each week then by the time the end of the year is here… I will have tackled and released a number of “problem” areas in my house!
A New Year with clean junk drawers (because you know I have more than one!) and fewer things sounds like a wonder to me! I am ready to turn the calendar over to November and get myself back on track!
What about you? How did your word show up this month?
I want to thank Carolyn again this month for hosting us all! Be sure you stop by to see what everyone has to share!
It was a random week, punctuated by a few maddening moments.
With the latest update from my daughter… the tooth is still wiggly. Or at least it was on Monday! My daughter is back at work, which means Winston is in daycare and has had one illness after another. While we were there she shared how stressful being a “single parent” is (which I sadly know about all too well!) She is exhausted and I really wish I lived closer to be able to help her more! This is maddening moment number one for the week.
I sat down to begin the Great Advent Calendar project and as I read through the instructions again. I realized I need some ribbon… maddening moment number two because I made a list and got “everything” I needed… or so I thought. I will be making a trip to JoAnn’s today to get a spool of ribbon.
I have been valiantly trying to do Stitching In Hand and failing miserably, which brought maddening moment number three. I tried to give myself a bit of a grace period… you know, learning something new can be a challenge to the brain as well as the hands! It seemed easier to go in one direction… or so I thought, until I found that I was not going over enough threads on one row. I have ripped out all the “new” stitches put my hoop back on and went back to my tried and true method. Sometimes you cannot teach and old dog new tricks… or perhaps I need to practice on larger spaced cloth!
Being gone for several days at the beginning of October meant I did not get my act together to do any “Halloween” decorating until this week. I hauled the boxes upstairs from the garage (This is Pittsburgh… our garage is in our basement!) and then contemplated what to put out with less than 2 weeks left in the month. I pulled out my “Fall” decorations that can stay up through November and just got out a couple of things for Halloween. Some is better than none… right? Now I just need to make a decision about some kind of outside lights for Halloween night itself… None of which is maddening, thank goodness! lol
Have a great weekend everyone! I will see you all back here on Monday with my October Word update! (fun times!)
Autumn has been teasing us this week with cooler mornings that give way to mild afternoons. I am soaking up each and every moment of these most welcome days!
Has my Knitting Mojo returned? Well… there is a finished Gnorwen (who has been delivered to Steve’s mom already!) But knit a sweater mojo? I am still waiting for that to show up!
In the mean time…there is a thing I simply cannot get out of my head! A variation on this theme (Ravelry link) but a rectangular variation… knit from plötulopi yarn. I need to do some swatching to see how this will all work out but luckily I have some yarn in my stash I can do some swatching with! I need to determine a width and how many flowers might fit. I am thinking about two options:
- Option one: Three full flowers on one “row” and two full flowers with a half on each edge of the alternating “row” or
- Option two: Knit the “border” pattern… as an all over pattern.
Stay tuned for some swatching to see what I like best!
And I have begun some super secret Advent Calendar sewing… When I think of the whole thing together, it seems a bit overwhelming, so I have broken it down into parts to work on over the next three weeks. I will share photos once the it has been delivered to the recipients!
Now how about a long overdue book update?!
The Sum of Us: What Racism Costs Everyone and How We Can Prosper Together by Heather McGhee
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
What to read when you think you are a “good ally” but in reading you discover that you still have a long way to go to even get to being a good ally.
This is a hard book to listen to (and I listened to Heather read it to me) it is full of gut-punches. To think about the phrase “cut your nose off to spite your face” is the reality of this book. Rather than do the right thing… the moral thing… we as a nation have chosen to do the wrong thing too many times to count… and have chosen to do it almost always to our own detriment.
Heather lays out a very clear roadmap of the systemic racism that has long been the foundation of this nation (and, sadly, is still its guiding principle today.)
I highly recommend this as must read material!
The Crowded Grave by Martin Walker
My rating: 2 of 5 stars
I had originally given this book 3-stars, but my disappointment in it is great. I have been scratching my head wondering how this pleasant little novel, set in the loveliest setting, could jump the shark so badly. I have since downgraded it to 2-stars but with a huge caution… the dog dies.
I do not recommend this installment in the Bruno series for that reason.
The English Girl by Daniel Silva
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
If you ask me which story from the Allon series did Gabriel hit is stride… it will be this book. Gosh, it was just so good seeing the culmination of all the work from the previous novels finally settle into place… and finally for Gabriel to be comfortable with that culmination.
As always, Allon’s wisdom and smarts are the best bits of the writing. And coming closely behind that are the relationships he builds with those around him and how he never, ever holds a grudge.
The Narrowboat Summer by Anne Youngson
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
What an entirely charming and completely unexpected little book. The characters are lovely, the relationships they form are touching, and where they each start is not where they finish.
The power of friendship is an incredible thing!
I highly recommend this book!
What about you? What is calling you this week?
As always, if you wrote a post to share please leave your link below and thank you!
I usually write Monday’s post on Sunday afternoon… usually. Yesterday no inspiration struck at all so Monday morning arriving sans blog post is leaving me feeling a bit like the kid who did not do *any* of their homework over the weekend. Hoo boy…
Welcome to the Monday-est Monday! LOL
Sadly, I don’t have any cohesive thoughts but I do have some odds and ends that might be share-worthy! So here we go!
It has been a most un-fall-like fall in these parts. We were still running the air last week. And can I tell you about the volume of mosquitoes outside? As a result, I have begun paying closer attention to the Dark Sky app with hopes of a bug killing frost heading my way SOON because I am so over having a gajillion mosquito bites on my arms and legs! They are even making Sherman miserable so we tried a salve that someone recommended… and it works well! (Bonus in that it has really helped make my hands feel softer too! lol)
Speaking of hands… it has been eons since I went to get manicures at a salon. And for a time I was trying to paint my nails on the regular… but I really missed how nice my nails looked having them done professionally, not to mention that Salon Nails lasted way longer than Home Nails. I know I am late to the Olive and June crowd, but wow. Way back in September I got a start up kit…which I thought was kind of spendy but it had 5 bottles of polish and some other gadgets. I added in the nail primer and can I tell you all how blown away I am?!! Today I am on day 15 of a polish… and it is still going strong! I don’t get the whole Poppy thing and I am not doing “Manicure Bootcamp” but for a long lasting polish they are winners!
My To-Do List today includes filling out my ballot for the November election and get it mailed in pronto. I have been an avid poll worker since moving to PA but I am taking a hard pass this time around. The vitriol at the past two elections has been unsettling and that vitriol… well it has ramped up significantly in my neighborhood. It was not an easy decision, but once I made it I knew it was the right one… at least for the time being. If you go to vote in person in November… please take a moment to thank the people working there. They don’t hear it often enough!
As I mentioned on Friday, I got my flu shot last week and I also got my third COVID booster as well. That Double Whammy did me in… I did not move far from the sofa on Saturday. But by Sunday I was feeling much better and had a bit of a weekend! But that sofa time on Saturday? Well, I watched and re-watched (and maybe made Steve watch it with me for a third time!) the Animal Crossing Nintendo Direct! If you have not played for a bit… some FUN things are coming in November!
What about you? What odds and ends are part of your Monday?
Oh… and that sunset? That was the ending of my day last Thursday. It was too gorgeous not to share!