Early December RIFFing | 12.2.22

Early December RIFFing | 12.2.22

December. A desperate celebration of an end.
— Chandrama Deshmukh, A Teaspoon of Stars

This quote sort of sums of December for me…the end of a year, the end of a word (which has been a very good word for me!), the end of my being 62, the end of my Year of Gnomes (yes… I am doing a +1 in January… there is no way you can quit gnoming cold turkey! haha)

And with all those ending things, it is so hard to not look ahead to what is coming.

I don’t want to do that and so I am going to daily remind myself to savor the day… be full of the moment… and not filling myself with the anticipation of what is to come.

Do I need to do some planning and thinking about January? Yes, I do… but I am not going to allow that to overtake the Celebration of December!

Now, how about some things that have been on my mind recently!

Remembering —

Christine McVie. Her death came as a gut punch to me this week. I will forever remember her singing this:

Infatuated (with) —

Three hand knits have found me circling back to look at them for a while now. I have been in the ‘wait and see’ mode… waiting to see if this infatuation I have for them will grow into a lasting love… which will mean I can cast on with confidence!

  1. Kate Gilbert’s Nouvelle Vague (From Knitty Deep Fall) or really… a Clapotis Gradation. IMO, the Original Clapotis has the preferred shape and I had I had knit one eons ago but maybe I need a new one? I don’t know, but I am enamored of the idea of doing one in the Fade Fad. But the fad idea has halted me from moving this from infatuation to project.
  2. Drawing Sweater. Oh my. Sweater as a work of art… absolutely. And when I first saw this, if I had the yarn to knit one in my stash, I would have instantly cast on. But then I saw this….
  3. Flutter. Wow, right? Anyways, in my brain, I would do this and steek it. Flutter is just so lovely… and maybe more useful than a sweater?
(be) Fuddled —

Imagine my total surprise when Spotify notified me that my Spotify Wrapped 2022 was ready for me. Huh?

We regularly listen to Spotify, but we *always use Steve’s Spotify* … as in I make the food, Steve does the music. I know, it is a massive contribution that he makes! LOL

Anyways, the *only* thing I have used Spotify for in the past year was to listen to podcasts that were only on Spotify.

However, the list was even more befuddling… I have never listened to any of these songs, nor has Steve ever selected any playlists with any of these on it! WTAF Spotify, WTAF!

(some word) Forethought —

As my year with Full draws to a close, I have had the curious incidence of a new word nudging me for some time now. I ignored it at first, but the nudges persisted and became more frequent. I have settled in to the idea of this word, but it is a bit scary as I contemplate “the how” of this word so I have been contemplating it lots. In lots of ways. So to make sure that I capture any and all ideas that pop into my head during the day… I have started an Apple Note(s) for it. Some ideas I am sure will be hilarious to look back on, but I am capturing them all. And, while I think this technically might be Word Cheating, I am happy to be filling the tiniest bit of my days with Word Planning 2023!

And I am even more excited to sign up for Ali Edwards OLW 2023 “class” and this year I think my word will work in such a way that I can do some journal documentation! Stay tuned!

And there you have some very varied RIFFing for this first weekend in December! See you all back here on Monday!

Gratitude Week | 11.25.22

Gratitude Week | 11.25.22

Piglet noticed that even though he had a Very Small Heart, it could hold a rather large amount of Gratitude. ― A.A. Milne, Winnie-the-Pooh

The day after Thanksgiving should be an easy day to be grateful, right? We have full bellies, leftovers, and…if we are lucky…a slice of pie for breakfast!

So where does one go from here…the last day of Kym’s Gratitude Week.

In years past, I have jotted down a Gratitude List of five or so things each day in a “Gratitude Journal.” But after awhile, this felt trite to me… so much of the sameness written down, but did that really help me focus on being grateful? So I stopped writing in my gratitude journal and noted that stopping made no difference in how I felt or my attitude.

And so I began to change how I thought about having a grateful heart. Instead of writing things down, I kept my eyes and ears open for things that might cross my path that sparked gratitude. Those things came easier it seemed.

  • A particularly cheerful bird song.
  • The palest hint of a sunrise or a sunset.
  • Hearing the school age children full of excitement to tell their mom about their day.
  • The hushed silence that a late autumn morning brings.
  • Reading a poem that moves me in a new or profound way.

Great things to be grateful for, but still… it seemed lacking to me. But one thing that Carolyn blogged recently has been rattling around my brain.

“Before bed, I jotted 3 things I was grateful for and 3 things I did for someone else that day.”

I have not stopped thinking about this: “3 things I did for someone else that day.”

Hard truths are never easy to share… but I don’t often do things for someone else.

Now, I am not including Steve, my kids, or my grandkids here… those are the people it is easy to do things for. The people you are happy to help with a cheerful, loving heart. Nor am I counting the places I make donations to… is making a donation a good thing? Absolutely! But it is something that is, for me, easy to do!

But what am I physically doing for the someone else’s that I have no connection with? The answer is a whole lot of not very much.

So where I hope to take Gratitude Week is to look for the someone else’s. I am going to go beyond simply keeping my eyes and ears open. I want to try and go deeper, to stretch my gratitude boundaries – to find the parts that “carry the most weight” (to quote Carolyn again) in the things I do for others.

And there you have it… my take on how to close out Gratitude Week.

I hope that your Friday is full of all the things you love! See you all back here on Monday with my Word update!

 

Gratitude Week | 11.25.22

Happy Thanksgiving, Gratitude Week | 11.24.22

Abundance:
noun
the situation in which there is more than enough of something
an amount that is more than enough

Abundance is something I have been thinking about frequently this year, it popped up many times as I worked through my  word – full.

And the one thing I discovered this year was that the having all the things, being full, or overflowing… was not always the end goal. In fact, it is not a goal at all. So I spent this year paring down the abundance of things I have trying to get to the point of having just enough. Not more than enough… just enough.

And let me tell you, it is a struggle!

So today I am focusing on three things that I noticed recently…

  1. The news loves to tell us all that there are “supply chain” issues, yet I found an abundance of choices to fill my Thanksgiving table with more than enough. Did I have to skip things on my list? Yes, but they are not necessary… at all. We won’t go hungry today or this week! And yes, there will be leftovers!
  2. All the online retailers have now started Black Friday well before Black Friday. That includes online fabric stores, all the online yarny things, and yes… even nail polish. This has meant that I began unsubscribing from a plethora of things in early November! That niggling fear of missing out on “that next thing” really is one of my largest factors for adding to the abundance of things in my house.
  3. We cut the cable cord some years ago, but recently we have been discussing how we replaced cable with an abundance of streaming services. The New Year will see a vast paring down of those services… we have placed them all on a sheet and plan to discuss who stays and who goes in the coming weeks.

So you might be wondering at this point… where’s the gratitude? Me too! Ha!

I am grateful to have choices, to have the means to even contemplate abundance, and… perhaps most importantly… the ability to share, give, and do for others who might not have all the choices and abundance we do.

Now I am going to watch a video that Kym shared yesterday! Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

Gratitude Week | 11.25.22

A Week of Gratitude | 11.22.22

Today’s things I am grateful for are things I have absolutely no control over, but that does not mean I feel less gratitude about them!

Start each day with a positive thought and a grateful heart. ― Roy T. Bennett, The Light in the Heart
  • This weeks weather…there has been an abundance of sunshine and more for today and tomorrow! And!! The mild(er) temps to accompany the sunshine. I am doubly grateful because these things (sunshine and milder temps) will make putting out the lights much easier!

  • Speaking of lights, it was an absolute joy to watch my neighbors grown grandchildren come and put out their Christmas lights! They were as delighted to do this task as their grandparents had watching them do it! Bonus gratitude, seeing those twinkling lights lit up last night!
  • And my final out-of-my-control thing I am grateful for is that Steve is working from home all week. (Reason why? Well, they had a bit of a COVID Super Spreader Event at his office and so… back to work from home!) No, I am not grateful that people are sick… but I am grateful that Steve is, thus far, not sick and home!

There you have it… three things I am grateful for that are entirely out of my control! What about you? How do you look at those things you can’t control?

See you tomorrow with some Unraveled Gratitude!

Gratitude Week | 11.25.22

Sometimes Monday | 11.21.22

is for contemplating Gratitude!

Kym has invited and I will happily join in!

My plan? To post three things I am grateful for every day this week.

And before you ask….Yes, Unraveled Wednesday will be here… but a gratitude edition! (I mean how can one not be thankful that they are a maker and a reader?!)

Things I am grateful for today:

  1. My improving painting skills and finding a creative outlet that both challenges and inspires me!
  2. Sherman… every single day! But especially this week as he is my constant kitchen companion!
  3. Poetry… which I cannot imagine not being part of my day… any day. But most certainly a week that we focus on gratitude!

And with that, I am going to begin the housework portion of my day… with a grateful heart. Happy Monday All!

 

 

 

Sometimes Monday | 11.14.22

Sometimes Monday | 11.14.22

Brings big changes and the urge to bake all the things!

Starting with the weather… last Monday ushered in a glorious week. We had temps in the 70’s several times! I had to break out the summer attire to stave off a need for Steve to turn on the AC during the week (I lost… he did turn on the AC, sigh.)

Today, the furnace has been running steadily and it was just barely 30°F when I took Sherman for our morning walk. My ears got cold, I could have used a hat! I saw a few flakes drifting gently down on Saturday, but no accumulation. But the inner child in me did a mini-dance of joy at this week’s forecast with better snow chances on Thursday!

This colder weather turns my attention to baking. Today I am going to whip up David Lebovitz French Apple Cake. His take on Dorie Greenspan’s version is my absolute favorite! I think there will also be some more pumpkin bread as well!

The big dough bucket will be empty this week so it will be time to fill it back up! That wheat dough… well the taste is wonderful and it stayed soft and moist for the 4-days it lasted! We finished it off Saturday night with a “breakfast for dinner” of eggs and toast! In my second attempt, I baked it in a loaf shape as the recipe suggested. I used the baking steel that we use for pizza and my results were so good!

Finally, I am going to make a big batch of Baked Pumpkin Steel Cut Oats because there is nothing better than some hot oats to help warm you up after an early morning excursion with Sherman!

And there you have my very full list for the week! I will see you all back here on Wednesday with some other sorts of making!

 

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