A new quarter… a new currently list. I love these post to look back on and see what I was doing 3 months ago but I hope you find something interesting or something inspiring in them too!
Soaking In —
Rainer Maria Rilke… I am so in love with him. I have been reading (again) through two of his books – Letters to a Young Poet and Rilke’s Book of Hours. The pages are becoming more dog-eared and I have underlined so many passages in each. And yet, if I turn back to pages I had read before… I still find something new, something moving, something inspiring. Recently, two things keep jumping out at me… surrender
“If we surrendered to earth’s intelligence we could rise up rooted, like trees.”
“…the point is, to live everything. Live the questions now. Perhaps you will then gradually, without noticing it, live along some distant day into the answer.”
Surrender to the day and just live it fully! That is my new morning mantra. Good direction for my day and so I will joyfully continue soaking in some Rilke wisdom and see what else he has to show me!
The final episodes of Endeavor. It has been such a great series and I am sad to see it end, but I will be savoring each episode… and then I think I will queue up some vintage Inspector Morse to complete the circle. In the things I did not know category… I had no idea that John Thaw’s daughter had a part in the Endeavor series. She played the delightful Dorothea Frazil. I shall miss them all terribly! And if you have finished them… no clues please. Ha!
While I am very much wishing that former me had spent more time thinking about what I would do with my Year of Stitching. And while I very much like each month, I have been stymied about the “final product” for them. I have toyed with a multitude of ideas on how to display them but they are each so big… I don’t have the wall-space to hang them! And so the conundrum of what to do with them continued….until I got some incredible inspiration from a much wiser maker about putting them together in a book. And that inspiration has me very excited. I have begun the process of pulling out fabrics to begin my “page” construction. I think there will be a bit more stitching as I pull each month together. I have some foolish idea that this won’t take all that long once I get everything cut… but my wiser inner voice is telling me that this won’t be a July Finish, but if I stay focused it will be the thing that gets me through the Heat of Summer!
And there you have my current situation. Of course, there are many other things going on… but these things are things I want to remember when I look back on my year. I will see you all back here Wednesday!
April ushers in the second quarter and so it is time for me to share a “currently” post and share some random things that I don’t talk about on the regular…
I have not stopped thinking about this post since I read it. In that one post, Anne has provided so much for me to think about… and this all ties in so well with my word this year. And while I am well past menopause and the empty nest blues so much of what Anne shared hit home for me… most especially the body neutral discussion. Anne’s words “knowing that these measurements are morally neutral” were so powerful. I had not taken my measurements for eons, so I began there. It was not easy, but I did it and even wrote down all the numbers! By avoiding the whole subject of measurements, I was living in some fantasy world where the numbers were somehow the same as they were the last time I recorded them. The numbers are what they are… and being authentic to myself means loving myself exactly where I am today… with the current measurements and reminding myself that they are just numbers. I am also thankful for inclusive pattern makers, bold and beautiful influencers of.all.sizes. and for finding a new-to-me voice… I have queued up this episode to listen to this weekend.
Detroit-style Pizza… a couple of weeks ago that I tried a recipe that at first attempt needed several adjustments for it to be successful for me. Well, I did some Googling and found someone who likewise tried the recipe and felt it needed some tweaks as well. So last weekend, I gave her tweaks a try… and had great success! I could not find any Wisconsin Brick Cheese, however TJ’s aged cheddar worked just fine. The crispy cheesy crust was incredible. I will definitely use Serious Eats recipe again!
I have recently discovered the delight that are the Midsomer Murders series! I have made my way through the first couple of seasons and I am in love with DCI Barnaby and his trusty side kick, Sgt. Troy. Barnaby is a good detective, and he always figures out “who did it” and the OxfordshireMidsomer countryside is beautiful.
A trip later this month to visit Erie and most especially, Presque Isle! We are planning on doing an early morning bird walk… and I am super excited about that! We will also do our own bird walking, but it will be so fun to go with someone who knows more than we do! We also have plans to have a libation or two with a meal from Cork 1794. We are working on some “new” things to add to our agenda… so if you have any Erie tips for me, I welcome them!
That’s all for me this week. I will be back with you on Monday! Have a great weekend all!
I thought I’d share a quick “snapshot” of what’s currently holding my attention.
A visit to a new PCP this month. I will say it is a nervous anticipation. I have filled out a thick stack of health forms which has me scratching my head a bit. This doctor is in *the same network* as my previous physician, and I have filled out all.this.paperwork before. Did the computer system break? Did my medical history get deleted? I can see it when I enter my “portal” where I clearly see that my PCP information is all there, and I can even message him through the system. Regardless, I have filled out all the papers and am ready to go see him, although I wish it was a her, but that is for another post!
All.The.Things! Banana bread – two loaves! I have a fresh bucket of dough in the fridge. I am loving the smell of fresh baked carbs wafting through the air! I love the ease of Artisan Bread in 5-minutes… and it is pretty darned tasty bread too! I also love that the dough can be purposed into loaves, boules, or even pizza! It makes it so easy and convenient! The posted a new recipe on their blog in early December that I will probably give a try this month as well. (Perhaps as a reward for that PCP visit! Haha)
I am going to spend some time this weekend putting together a year long temperature project… with embroidery! I just need to get a piece of linen and some embroidery floss. I am not planning on this being some extravagant project. Simple and fun is what I am aiming for, the one thing I deeply loved about the year long stitching project I did. I stitched for no more than 15 minutes a day… it was the “sweet spot” of time that ensured that I did it! Once I have all the pieces in place I will spend some time this weekend getting it all set up and begin gettin myself caught up! I will share my progress next week!
Vera! And I am reminded how much I love her… well, Brenda Blethyn, I suppose! Haha. I mean, when I read a Vera book, I hear Brenda speaking! (I bet you were thinking that I was going to say I was watching Groundhog Day in the House… I might be occasionally checking in, but if you saw one vote, you’ve seen them all. They are all the same! Ha!) And! Steve and I have been watching the second season of The Craftsman on Discovery+ Eric Hollenbeck is quite the character… he shares philosophy, poetry, history, and truly slow crafting.
Getting Ready —
To finish up the machine sewing projects I have had lingering for over a month now. When I reorganized my fiber stash, I also spent some time rethinking my “sewing corner” and have made some tweaks, which I hope will encourage me to sit down and sew! In case you need a reminder I have 2 corduroy tunics to sew up!
My Word! And I am having so much fun doing that! I have a bit of a “word cloud” going! Currently, it is on practice paper, I mean it is currently experiencing lots of flux! Ha! I just love the January Word Getting To Know You Time! I am finding some fun things, including a couple of books to read!
And I think that might be more than enough! Ha! Have a great weekend and I will see you all back here on Monday!
Welcome to the final Currently post of this year. I know. Where did the year go?
Time flies. It’s up to you to be the navigator. — Robert Orban
Good advice, and some advice I have been following closely this year – I am the navigator of my days – the “filler of my minutes”… Let’s see what I am finding to fill those minutes, shall we?
Even though November has decided to revisit early summer this week…tomorrow will be in the upper 70’s and Steve is threatening to turn on the AC again. Sigh. However, I know that cold weather is hanging on the doorstep and as such, my desire to cook all the cold weather foods is burning inside me! This week I made a huge pot of chicken soup, chocked full of carrots, celery, and yes… chicken. I also picked up some Vital Wheat Gluten to try my hand at this whole wheat bread recipe, which I will be baking later today! And next week I have plans to do more baking…pumpkin bread anyone?
I am savoring the latest Masterpiece Mystery – The Magpie Murders. I have watched one and really enjoyed it. I hope to catch myself up with it as my Gnome Knitting companion. Ha! I also watched the latest Shetland series on Britbox… the farewell to DI Jimmy Perez. It was bittersweet, but I hope they have plans to continue something with Tosh and Sandy. It is not quite the same as the books, but they are based on Ann Cleeves books. And can we just talk about the scenery for a moment? It is stunning. Speaking of stunning… I discovered a BBC Scotland show, Landward (also on Britbox.) It is a little glimpse into life in Scotland with a heavy take on farming and nature.
Last night, I began Gnome Eleven and purchased the December Mystery Gnome… and I have begun thinking about yarn colors (the mystery gnome needs 5 colors!) I am not purchasing yarn but rather will be peeking into my yarn leftover bag if I need to add something different than what I have used thus far this year! And my new Gnome… well, I am thinking it will be a she… so no beard, but I am seeing some curly locks! And she has a handspun sweater… so I know she is crafty. I am wondering if I could take a wee button and a bit of a broken dpn and make her a little drop spindle! The Gnome Knitting has been such a fun project this year… and I am thinking about what to do next year that will inspire whimsy and creativity! I also have been enamored of all the in-process Pressed Flowers I have seen on IG. I am not jumping on the knitting bandwagon to make a cardigan, but I am rekindling my plans for a rectangle shawl version. I am at the *thinking about yarns* stage… and wondering what I might couple with some handspun that I have.
While we were in Erie, we walked… a lot. On all sorts of terrain… and lots of uneven terrain. And each day I began to notice that my left hip was progressively more painful than the day before. And by the end of our time in Erie, me trying to walk in the morning would be comical and if I was not in so much pain, I’d surely have laughed at how I looked hobbling around. The intense pain has subsided (although the stairs are still a bitch) but I am making an appointment to go see my doctor to discuss what might be the problem. And I am long overdue for an eye check… but oof, do I need one. So it is on my list to make an appointment, pronto! And after that… I need to address my hearing (or lack thereof) issue. Getting old is not for the faint of heart!
While I have not been stressing about it, I am concerned about what our nation will look like after Tuesday’s elections and what all that will mean for democracy as I have known it. I have voted and I have encouraged everyone I speak with to vote. (I mostly don’t care who you vote for as long as that candidate is living in a fact-based reality…) It does make me so angry that there is a very loud faction of people in America who are racist as all get out… and they are not even ashamed of it at all. And all this not so subtle fanning of the flames of violence… well, I just don’t know how we pull back from that but I hope there are more voters that are concerned about voting for candidates who live in a fact-based reality than not. And I really hope that all the poll workers working next week are safe.
And with that, I leave you. Have a great weekend and I will be back on Monday!
The start of July came and went… and despite me placing a notification in my electronic calendar, I entirely missed the notification reminding me that July brings another “Currently” post. Thankfully, Carole gently reminded me this week with her timely post on her current world!
So while this post is a bit late… July is practically over… how about a peek into what my world looks like! So get something to drink and let me tell you what has been going on around here!
Contemplating: Change… in so many things. One thing that has a big change happening wis the On Being podcast, which I was a faithful listener! It is changing… no longer a weekly venture for Ms. Tippet, but when it returns in the fall it will be different… but still centered around mind-opening conversation. But for the summer… Krista is bring us The Summer of Pause. And I must tell you… it is the perfect pairing for my word this month. I have been focused on filling my days with the simple, and what is simpler than to take a pause. This quote struck a deep cord and I have written it in several places as a reminder to myself…
When we pause, allow a gap and breathe deeply, we can experience instant refreshment. Suddenly, we slow down, look out, and there’s the world. — Pema Chödrön
Allowing a gap is a beautiful thing… and I am really loving it! So while change can be a struggle… I am such a creature of habit… there is something good about change as well. This focus on simplicity has allowed me to spend some time in the gap… pausing… relishing the simple… and in the process appreciated what all this has done for my mental health! Less reactions to stress. Better sleep… such better sleep. Feeling better about myself. Small wins with an immense impact!
Learning: I have completed my first watercolor lesson. And I have learned so much. I watched the video and took many notes. I then got my paper ready and started the video again… and started trying the new techniques I was learning. I can be very self-critical… and I see many mistakes. Too wet…. too much paint… not enough paint…. too dry. But I am counting a win that I can identify my challenges and will submit my homework for welcome critique. And I will keep practicing… I can tell you all this… time just flies when I am painting. It is a welcome pause in my day!
Starting at the very beginning…
Listening: Some weeks ago, I read that Heather McGhee was going to do a podcast and the first episodes dropped this week. It is called The Sum of Us and is available on Spotify. I have listened to the first two episodes and have enjoyed them tremendously. If you liked her book by the same name, you will love the podcast. Heather is traveling across the country and talking to people… something I think she does incredibly well. It is very different from the normal listening I do… it is not like listening to an audiobook and it is very different from a poetry podcast. A welcome change in my listening rotation!
In My Backyard: Recently I shared that “our” regular bunny pair had made a nest near our patio. In fact, she made her nest in a “Tomato Bag” that I had recently pulled out the tomato plant that was not doing well, but I neglected to empty the bag of the dirt and put it away… because lazy – or perhaps lucky?? Serendipitous most certainly because it was just so much fun watching them care for the wee little bunnies. Anyways, last Sunday was Baby Bunny Move Out Day, and we watched the littles (there were 4 of them) trying to figure out how they were going to get out of the bag! We watched them all day as they hopped around… peering over the edge and wondering which might be the first out. The daddy bunny was in the yard, watching them closely… patiently waiting. Sadly, we did not see The Great Escape and by morning the nest was empty. Sigh. We have gotten glimpses of them around the yard several times though! Sometimes it is the simplest little things that bring the greatest joy… and those little bunnies certainly brought so much joy!
Joni Jamming: On my bucket list is to someday be in person at the Newport Folk Festival… someday. However, the surprise visit of Joni Mitchell to this year’s fest has had me wishing I had been there and I have been Joni Jamming ever since. The only word that comes to my mind is miraculous… and tonights happy hour is gonna be all Joni!
Some of my all time favorites: Both Sides Now, Just Like This Train, and Big Yellow Taxi…
Over-done: As in the never ending heat. I try so hard not to waste the season I am in wishing for the next season to get here.. but gosh! This heat has done me in… I am really ready for it to be over. There is little joy in sitting outside in 90+ degree temps trying to be comfortable… so we have spent far too many days indoors with the AC blasting. I am ready for a break… although, all this heat (with very little rain) means that Steve has not had to mow the yard in weeks… so there’s that. But still… I am longing for 70-ish degree days that I can have the AC off and the windows all open!
And there you have it, gentle readers… a slice of my current life! Have a great weekend and I will see you all back here on Monday!