Unraveled Wednesday | 6.17.20

Unraveled Wednesday | 6.17.20

Greetings Unravelers!

Be the change you wish to see in the world. — Mahatma Gandhi

First up, I wanted to talk briefly about change. It is never easy but two well-loved sites recently changed things up… and I love both of the changes!! MDK is now Modern Daily Knitting. Well done ladies! I am standing and applauding this change! Ravelry also changed things up in a very good way! Kudos to both of them for showing us all that sometimes change is a very good thing!

I am s-l-o-w-l-y working my way through Clue Two of the TTL Mystery Shawl and I confess… it is not at all what I expected! I love it… and I love these yarns together. I was a bit worried there would not be enough contrast, but I like the muted differences very much. I did not need another “stripey” shawl, but this is not that at all.

I have refrained from swatching for Purl Strings, but just barely.

I have been spending lots of time in the garden weeding and watering. I realize that the later increases weed growth, but it also inspires new vegetable plant growth!

A slow week for reading – no new bingos but still, an excellent reading week! Thank you Katie for recommending this book!

The Things We Cannot SayThe Things We Cannot Say by Kelly Rimmer
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

A book full of fascinating relationships, interesting characters, a riveting story, and a bit of a mystery.

If you like history, you will like this book. If you like real character growth, you will like this book. If you like mysteries, you will like this book.

The story unfolds on two timelines – present day, and during WWII – told by to strong female characters: Alice and Alina.

There is love, love lost, deep friendship, and the love of fellow man. I highly recommend this book!

I also owed you all a review of Mourning in Malmö… and here you go!

Mourning in Malmö (Inspector Anita Sundstrom #7)Mourning in Malmö by Torquil MacLeod
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

If you read the reviews, you would think that this book was entirely about Anita. But it’s not! There is some wonderful character development of Anita’s team, especially Hakim Mirza. The story ends with a shocking twist that I did not see coming and I can hardly wait for the next installment of this series!

That is all I have for this week! I hope your making is not in the slow lane, and your reading is the kind you want to savor!

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

Unraveled Wednesday | 6.10.20

Unraveled Wednesday | 6.10.20

It seems that in all things, I have this idea that whatever it is I am making will go quicker than it does in actuality.

However, at long last, I have a finished Ranunculus! It needs a nice wash, but I should be wearing it before the week is out! AND!! Just in time because the 90 degree temps have arrived in Pittsburgh this week! And it will be the perfect sitooterie sweater! Yes, thanks to Scott Simon, I learned a new word this week and I am wanting to use it all the time! I mean shouldn’t we all have a sitooterie of our own?

No, I have not started the TTL MKAL… yet. I did wind one skein of yarn, but have yet to cast on.

And no, I have not finished Larissa Brown’s Lunar Phases shawl either. Sigh…

However, I can’t stop thinking about this, or this, or this, or this!

Do you see a pattern here? Yeah, me too… I can’t settle myself on one project. Perhaps I need to change it up and do some sewing to  cleanse my palette! Ha!

Summer reading continues to be awesome though.

Disappearing EarthDisappearing Earth by Julia Phillips
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This story pulled me in from the first paragraph and it took me on a journey full of unexpected things. I expected something different, but I was far from disappointed! What a beautifully written and engaging story. I know nothing about this area of Russia and I was fascinated with the people and the story. I highly recommend this book!

I also finished Mourning in Malmö late last night and I have yet to write my review. But with that finish, I have another bingo!!

Pink Bingo Titles: Shadow Pass, New Poets of Native Nations, Mourning in Malmo, The Crane Wife, American Dirt.

As you can see, I have a plan for where I am going and I have some ideas for “set in the state where you live” but I am on waitlists for several books that will fit this category at the library… and first up will fill the square!What about you? How is your reading moving you this week?

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

Unraveled Wednesday | 6.3.20

Unraveled Wednesday | 6.3.20

Greetings Unravelers!!

First, thank you for all the very kind comments for my Me Made May post! It might be the first time I have been successful in wearing things I made for an entire month and I did not make anything new, outside of the Romi Mystery Shawl that I finished during the month! Yes, that’s right – no new articles of clothing were made to get me through the month! I impressed myself and my closet space has increased dramatically! Where to go with all the things I have removed are the next thing I am contemplating. Donating in Coronavirus Times is turning out to be quite tricky! I will update you when I have found an outlet.

Sadly not much making going on in my house these days, but I have departed for Sleeve Island with my Ranunculus! Yay!

I have not picked up my Lunar Fade in a couple of weeks and I have yet to even wind the yarn for the TTL MKAL.

But if I can get those sleeves done sooner than later, I might get to one (or both??) this week!

I have two awesome finishes this week (and another bingo, but still no cover all!) Two excellent and dramatically different finishes! I also started a new bingo card this week!

Tightrope: Americans Reaching for HopeTightrope: Americans Reaching for Hope by Nicholas D. Kristof
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I am not sure reading this book in the midst of a pandemic was smart, but there you have it. This was a hard listen. I cried multiple times in this book and without making this book be “all about me”, I absolutely saw much of my family in these pages. I am grateful for grandparents that made a difference in my life, like many of the people in this book. We as a nation must care about everyone, especially those outside the margins. I highly recommend this must-read book.

The Crane WifeThe Crane Wife by Patrick Ness
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I did not know anything about this Japanese tale but I needed a book for a “retelling” for SAH Summer Bingo. Enter George Duncan and the book opens with him finding a wounded crane in his yard. And so the story begins. George has not been successful in life in relationships, but then comes Kumiko. I loved everything about this story. Love, loss, friendship, and a battle of good over evil. I highly recommend!

That’s all I have for this week… I am going to try and get those sleeves done! What should you be working on this week?

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

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!

Unraveled Wednesday | 5.20.20

Unraveled Wednesday | 5.20.20

I am still working through the last clue of the Larissa Brown’s mystery shawl. I have some blocking of the pieces to get done (and a pattern update on dimensions just dropped yesterday) so in the mean time I am being entirely distracted with a Linen Ranunculus. The photo above is an hour or so of knitting, so I think this sweater will knit up quickly! AND it will be the perfect summer sweater! (and yes, I am totally copying these sweater mods)

This yarn is just incredibly yummy!

I have really hit my reading stride this week! No bingo’s yet, but I should have my first one in the next day or two!

Dept. of SpeculationDept. of Speculation by Jenny Offill
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I started this book and almost stopped reading it because I wasn’t sure I needed a rambling stream of conscious book right now. And then it clicked. Perfectly. Or rather, imperfectly.

Three things no one has ever said about me: You make it look so easy.

If you have spent any amount of time looking at your life wondering why everyone else’s life is perfect and yours is just, well, not. This is the book that will validate you and have you feeling good about it by the time you are finished. I wish I had read this book when I had three small children and contemplating divorce. I too was living in the Little Theater of Hurt Feelings as well, but I wish that I knew the name of if while I was there!

This could have been my Christmas Letter, had I ever made the effort to send one:
Dear Family and Friends, It is the year of the bugs. It is the year of the pig. It is the year of losing money. It is the year of getting sick. It is the year of no book. It is the year of no music. It is the year of turning 5 and 39 and 37. It is the year of Wrong Living. That is how we will remember it if it ever passes. With love and holiday wishes.

Now I am looking at all those Christmas Letters I got and wondering…

I highly recommend this brilliant little book.

The Splendid and the Vile: A Saga of Churchill, Family, and Defiance During the BlitzThe Splendid and the Vile: A Saga of Churchill, Family, and Defiance During the Blitz by Erik Larson
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Early Quarantine Days Me just could not settle into this book at all. I would pick it up and read a page or two and zone out.

So I put it down and waited. And about the 10th of May, I picked it up and started again and it all just clicked this time… and I suddenly found myself needing to pace my reading to make it last!

This is a brilliantly written book about Churchill and the Blitz of London. I thought when I started the book the first time that I would end up disliking Churchill, but I can tell you that is absolutely not true, in fact – I might love him even more!

If you like history you will enjoy this book. If you love history, you will love settling into the days with Winston, and you will appreciate the insight, the conversations, and all the things that are not in history books.

The preface gives a hint at the splendor to come:

Although at times it may appear to be otherwise, this book is a work of nonfiction. Anything between quotation marks comes from some form of historical document, be it a diary, letter, memoir, or other artifact; any reference to a gesture, gaze, or smile, or any other facial reaction, comes from an account by one who witnessed it. If some of what follows challenges what you have come to believe about Churchill and this era, may I just say that history is a lively abode, full of surprises.

AMEN! If you read nothing else this year, but this book on your list! I highly recommend!

And that is all I have for this week! If you wrote a post to share, please leave your link below and thank you for joining us!

Unraveled Wednesday | 5.13.20

Unraveled Wednesday | 5.13.20

I finished Romi’s Mystery Shawl and I love it!! It is exactly what I wanted – it is lightweight and perfect for “indoor AC deep freezes” Haha. It is one color, and knit from some centuries old Knit Picks Shadow Lace yarn from my stash. I could not be happier and I loved every step of this shawl from the brilliant center start to the superbly stretchy (but not sloppy) bind off. Now I am wondering what might be my next Romi knit!! I have been eyeing Miss Bab’s new yarn and contemplating…

I think I finally found solace in my reading because my reads this week were so good! I filled 3 more bingo squares, but still no bingo’s… My squares this week: Comfort Read = Tartine Bread (because homemade bread is the ultimate comfort food, amirite?), Originally published in the 19th Century = Leaves of Grass, and Borrowed = Shadow Pass. I am on the wait list for the third book in the Inspector Pekkala series and eager to get it! (and next week, I get even more creative with my square and book pairing, haha)

Tartine BreadTartine Bread by Chad Robertson
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

What does one do when you are stuck in the Great Stay at Home Pandemic of 2020… why you try to grow a Sourdough Starter! (Key word…**try**).

This book came highly recommended by a friend, and so I got it and began reading. This is truly user friendly. It explains clearly what to do to get your starter going, how to maintain your starter, and then how to bake bread (and dozens of other things) using your starter. I have several Peter Reinhart baking books, but they seem complicated where as this book is truly streamlined and tested! (With test bakers that were not all bakers!!) If your goal is to bake sourdough bread, look no further! Get this book and get going!

I highly recommend!

Leaves of GrassLeaves of Grass by Walt Whitman
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I had “read” this in high school and wrote a paper on When Lilac’s Last in the Dooryard Bloomed. Or should I say, I wrote a paper with the help of my maternal grandfather. The Lincoln poem was one he had memorized. When I read this a lifetime ago, I did not get it at all. But, now…

Wordy, geographical, questioning, wondering, amazing.

Whitman takes your hand and eases you into his world. I wonder what he would think of what this world has become. Through his eyes, I see new possibilities and with balanced longing for what was, and hope for what might be – I carry his words with me:

“Not I, nor anyone else can travel that road for you.
You must travel it by yourself.
It is not far. It is within reach.
Perhaps you have been on it since you were born, and did not know.
Perhaps it is everywhere – on water and land.”

I highly recommend you take the journey.

Shadow Pass (Inspector Pekkala #2)Shadow Pass by Sam Eastland
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Book Two of the Inspector Pekkala series did not disappoint. More character development happened in a very good way. More of Pekkala’s past was revealed and the start of seeing that Pekkala is not entirely enamored of Stalin’s Russia.

The writing is very good and I will continue with this series!

That is all I have for today (and this week!) What is making you happy in your making or reading this week? Please share!!

And if you wrote a post to share, please leave your link below and I will see you back here next Wednesday!

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