TGIF – A Holiday Weekend Edition!

TGIF – A Holiday Weekend Edition!

The weather forecast seems to be attempting to put the kibosh on a glorious welcome to summer:

But I am not going to let the weather stop me from having a good weekend!

In the plus column – I did indeed get my Charity Shawl completed and blocked! Which means I can ease back into my regularly scheduled knitting – which includes my Marsa Alam and a pair of toe-up socks! I have never knit a pair of socks toe-up so this is an entirely new experience for me. I am not sure how I feel about the process compared to my usual sock knitting method, but I will have a better idea once I have gotten to the heel. I am also a bit concerned about the cast off, but hopefully my typical stretchy bind-off will not fail me!

Thinking about:

Sewing! I finished my Rose muslin yesterday. I had made some alterations to the pattern – I shortened the length and I knew I would need to shorten the rise but I was unsure exactly how much to shorten it. And even though I did not quite shorten it enough, it is still a wearable muslin! I used some fabric I got at IKEA a couple of years ago. My original plan was to sew a cushion for the window seat at the top of our stairs, but that never happened and so I thought it would work well for a muslin and it did! The pattern directions are well written and very clear. I tried the pleat option and it was surprisingly easy!  I think the gathered front looks nice as well so I will get some fabric this weekend to make another pair. I think these would work with fun prints, linen, and even a lightweight denim! AND!! They are super comfortable and I predict these will be the Pants of the Summer!

Gearing up for:

The start of Summer Book Bingo! That’s right – any book finishes beginning tomorrow can count for a square! I am ON the “Made into a TV series” square with the first book of Elizabeth George’s Inspector Lynley series – A Great Deliverance. I have high hopes for this book as the reviews on Goodreads are stellar! I started it Wednesday night and should easily have it finished this weekend! It is not to late for you to join in as well! Book Bingo makes summer so much more fun!

Inspired by:

PatternScout! I love this idea of remaking things and giving them a new life. Also, I really love her pattern suggestions – especially the Burda Knot Front Blouse! And, I truly love her “Monologue” especially this: “This hobby has given me so much confidence…creatively and about my body.” YES, so much yes!!

Fun, fun, fun:

I am going to harvest some rhubarb today and have plans to make a batch of Rhubarb-Thyme Syrup. This will come in handy as an addition to some beginning-of-summer-inspired cocktails this weekend – I am thinking about something new with gin. Stay tuned – I will share the recipe next week!

That’s all I have for this week – have an amazing Memorial Day Weekend and I will see you all back here next week!

Three on Thursday | 5.22.19

Three on Thursday | 5.22.19

I am happily joining with Carole and friends this week to share some “ah-ha” things in my world this week!

Thing One:

Tuesday was local Primary Election Day in PA and turn out was sad… so sad. However, despite the horrendously poor turn out (we only had 82 voters in our precinct) the numbers were most interesting! The Democrat turn out beat the Republican turn out – in fact it was almost double! But the horrendously poor turn out meant I could spend more time talking with the people who voted! I met the gentleman who was Michael Chabon’s teacher and advisor when he was a student at Pitt! We talked about books and shared some “new to each of us” titles. It was almost the best moment of the day. The only better moment was the gentleman who was born in 1918 who came to vote. He still lives in his own home, he is very ambulatory, but his eyesight is “not what it once was” and he was happy that his son in law (who lives next door to him) drove him to vote. We should all take a page from this amazing 101-and-a-half-year-old man – voting is indeed our right and a privilege and we should exercise that right every single time we can!

Thing Two:

Book Bingo is on – and I “reset” the card twice and ended up with this one – lots of “ah-ha” things on here! And, I think it will work for my “Summer of Classics and New to Me Authors”!

Thing Three:

My final ah-ha moment this week was when I realized yesterday that this weekend is a LONG weekend! Now, I am hoping that Steve will be able to at least leave work early on Friday and our long weekend can be a little longer!

That is all I have for today – did you have any “ah-ha” moments this week?

Unraveled Wednesday | 5.22.19

Unraveled Wednesday | 5.22.19

Greetings, Unravelers!

I am writing this post on Monday while sipping my second iced coffee of the day. Tuesday will find me working the poll for PA Local Primary Voting Day. And, despite my thinking that it will not be at all busy for us – I still don’t think I will be able to get a blog post done on my phone. (Because, you know for certain if I was planning on that, it would be busy! Lol)

Anyways, I am taking the shawl to knit, and I have high hopes of finishing it! Once that is done, I can get back to my Marsa Alam. I did find one glaring error in my pickup of stitches for the neckband so I will have a tiny bit of unraveling to do. But it will be quick to rip out the neckband and redo it and then get started on the sleeves.

Juliann asked me on Monday if my weekend included any sewing. Sadly, it did not (nor did Monday!) I did get the pattern jigsaw puzzle put together and the pattern traced out, but then the reorganization of my sewing/craft room preempted any actual sewing. I hope to spend today cutting out the pattern and sewing up my muslin. I will update you how that all goes later this week!

As for reading, I have had no finishes this week and I am feeling a bit a drift in my reading – usually about now I am planning out my “Summer Book Bingo” books and I am definitely feeling like something is missing because of it! But I do have a plan for my summer reading – which includes reading some classics, and some authors I have never read before. New things can mean new reading excitement! My first book is by Eleanor Roosevelt – It’s Up to the Women – I thought this title was most timely for all the nonsense that is going on right now and a good place to start!

I have no set number of books I want to read but, my over-achiever success from last year is niggling in my brain…although I am not sure I want to repeat that feat! I would rather read more challenging books versus speed reading through a summer. Super long books – fine by me! Books that make me think – bring it on! The summer is all about expanding my reading horizons!

Last summer I read Anna Karenina and it was good, but I did not think it great – Carole suggested that I read War and Peace so that will be up soon in my listening queue. I also have Joe Wilkins novel in the above stack of books that I think I saw on Kwizgiver’s blog, which I am eager to get started!

I am listening to The Great Believer’s – all 1,097 minutes of it. I am almost 1/3rd into it and I hope to have it finished for next week’s post. (fingers crossed!)

I am also reading The Widows of Malabar Hill on my Kindle™ and I will bring that with me to work the polls on Tuesday, so that might be in the finished column by the time you are reading this!

That is all I have for today – a whole lotta not much, amirite? So, inspire me Unraveler’s – what are you making and reading this week?!

Oh, and what classic do you think I should add to my list?

As always, if you wrote a post to share – please leave your link below!

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And thank you all so much for participating!

Post Script: As I said, I wrote this post on Monday morning and by Monday night the Reading Gods had pity on this Summer Reading Fanatic. Mary will be hosting Summer Book Bingo! You can find all the deets here and you will find the rules here and can print your bingo card here! And, yes… I still want you to tell me what Classics I should add to my summer reading!

A huge thank you to Mary for putting this together! XO

Weekending | 5.20.19

Weekending | 5.20.19

A normal weekend – that is what I wished for and I’d say that was exactly what I got!

FriYAY Happy Hour made me very happy – we sat outside, and it was so lovely! And, can I just say that my new favorite drink might be a gin martini… that Bombay Sapphire is amazing stuff!

Saturday was full – so full! A trip to Costco, some yard work, and I then I decided to reorganized my “craft room” to accommodate sewing machines being out all.the.time! It took all afternoon and a good chunk of the evening. It just needs a few odds and ends put away, which I hope to finish up today. Fortunately,  dinner was super simple! Fresh asparagus and some amazing shrimp we picked up from our Costco trip – Steve grilled all of it and it was just so delicious.

My son sent a picture of the dog he is fostering – Sam (the feet, in case you did not know, lol) and Bowser (on the left) feel completely at home with Shakespeare (who Sam is calling Shake) – or maybe it is Shake that feels completely at home with them. I have my fingers crossed that I will soon have a new grand-dog to love!

Sunday morning, Steve did some more yard work – and really – all the heaving lifting yard work! He moved our fire pit to its new home…which allowed for the patio heater to move to its new place. We just have a few final things to finish up and the summer living areas will be all set. The temps got a bit warm and muggy on Sunday, so we cranked on the AC – which thankfully is now fully operational!

We closed out the weekend with a simple Sunday Happy Hour (inside this time and with AC!) in preparation for the GoT finale… no spoilers here, so I can’t tell you if those eight questions were answered! Sorry!! However, I will say that I was very happy with how the series ended.

My weekend hope that remains unfulfilled was to finish that blasted shawl, but I barely knit a stitch all weekend! However, I am working at the PA election tomorrow, which is a local primary election so sadly, it should not be too busy so I am hopeful to finish it then!

How was your weekend? I hope it was awesome!

TGIF | 5.17.19

TGIF | 5.17.19

Ahhh! This week, despite its disasters, was one of getting back to normal. Steve was back to work on Monday and I spent the week easing back into my daily routine and I am very ready for a normal weekend so let’s get this started!

Thinking About –

Women’s rights. I confess that for the first time in my life I am genuinely concerned about things I have taken for granted for almost my entire life. And the things happening recently in Alabama, Georgia, Mississippi, Kentucky, and Ohio are scary – so scary. But, honestly, for me it all comes down to this – no one should ever tell a woman what she can or cannot do with her body. And, in case you think this is all about the “sanctity” of human life – realize this: not one of the people voting for these laws gives a rat’s ass about children in cages, or about helping single mothers on WIC, or about the thousands of children in the foster care system. This is all about men controlling women and it makes me insanely angry.

Gardening –

Yesterday was a beautiful sunny day here in Pittsburgh – so I took advantage of that fact and spent some more time trying to finish up the vegetable gardens. Thankfully, gardening is the perfect outlet to direct some of my anger from this week’s news! And I even planted a few things! Steve added Moo-nure to the big beds yesterday and I hope to get the rest of the little plants in today. All this gardening has really done a number on my hands though, especially my poor nails. Oh boy. They are such a sad mess and I don’t think a manicure is going to fix them! But those garden beds are looking awesome, so it is a worthwhile trade off or at least that’s what I am telling myself! lol

Inspired by –

The latest Pom Pom Quarterly! Bravo to them for the beautifully varied body sizes! And, there are so many “I want to knit that” items! Like this, and this, and this, and this!

Focus –

My focus entirely slipped off the radar at the beginning of the month. Vacation time is not at all conducive to having any morning quiet time to get my inner self ready for the day! I missed it so much and I learned how important this time is for my focus! So, despite having a couple of days with a plethora of work men around, for the most part I was able to start my day with a focus – quiet and alone (except for Sherman who fortunately is not chatty in any way at all, lol). I did not realize how much I crave quiet in the morning nor did I realize how important that quiet is to my mental well-being.

That is all I have for today. I hope that your week was full of good things and that your weekend will be full of weekending! See you back here on Monday!

Three on Thursday | 5.16.19

Three on Thursday | 5.16.19

I am joining up with Carole and friends to share three things happening in my world this week!

Thing One:

Sometimes doing one thing leads to a another and sometimes it leads to a catastrophe! Case in point: Monday’s AC Check revealed an electrical disaster that resulted in the replacement of the weather head, all exterior wiring, the box for the AC unit, and a new electric panel in the house (which thanks to our Pittsburgh toilet** had to be relocated to a new location). These repairs coming on the heels of an extended vacation was such an awesome bonus…NOT!

Thing Two:

It is mid-May and I am sitting here writing this post wearing winter pajamas and a thick wool sweater. Mid-freaking-May (and that is not even talking about the amount of rain we’ve had!!) I would like to put my “cold weather” wardrobe away for the season…instead my closet has had an “all the seasons” bomb explode in it! However, the forecast looks like we are warming up over the next few days, so maybe some semblance of Closet Order can return, and I can finally put the winter wardrobe away. Fingers crossed!

Thing Three:

I see some sewing in my “weekend forecast” all because Rose is here! Coming up this weekend, a Capri muslin for starters and I am so excited!

Those are my things but, what about you? What things are in your world this week?

**thankfully our Pittsburgh Toilet is not just a toilet sitting in the open in the basement – there has been a bathroom constructed around it, lol.

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