TGIF | 4.24.20

TGIF | 4.24.20

I feel like I need to get a blackboard and write the day, date, month, etc. on it to help me remember what day it is! Yesterday felt like Wednesday – although, I am not sure Wednesday’s “feel” like anything, my brain was convinced it was. Today does not have a Friday vibe, but I am hoping the cocktail hour later today will fix that problem!

Third Time is the Charm?

Remember when I was all “this week’s charts are so much easier?” I am eating my words today…for the third time. I am going to try to “fix” my problem, but I am not holding out much hope of getting that to work. Which will mean I will be ripping back this section for the third time. My first mistake? I did not pay close attention to the chart rows with and without dashes – so I missed a row that was knit on the wrong side. Knitting this in one color, that row of purl bumps was crucial to seeing the detail of the pattern. So, RIPPPPPPP! And yesterday when I was almost done with the chart, I discovered that I dropped a couple of decrease stitches. Which, as you can see, sticks out like a sore thumb. Of course, this is in one of the “stitch clusters” or in my case… a stitch clusterfuck. One (good??) thing though…this has helped me with is my ability to rip out and pick up stitches like a professional! Sigh.

Grandmotherly Knitting

Two babies, means double the baby knitting!! I would really like to knit a couple of blankets (think Yarn Harlot baby blanket inspiration) and have begun looking for patterns, but have not found anything on Ravelry that is saying “knit me!” Perhaps all I need is a lace dictionary, yarn, and needles! If you have baby blanket suggestions, I welcome them!

Inspiring Poetry

These days I am more grateful that ever for the balm that poetry brings. It settles my mind and soothes my soul. This morning’s Writer’s Almanac was exceptional, and I hope you find beauty in Longfellow’s words, too!

Fri-nally!

Those flowers from last week truly are the gift that has kept on giving. I only pulled the gerbera daisy from the bunch, and now the lilies are opening! That makes me so happy! I hope your weekend is full of things that bring happiness to you!

See you all back here next week!

TGIF | 4.17.20

TGIF | 4.17.20

Breathe the incense of sun on prairie Offer peace to the sky — Heid E. Erdrich, Peace Path

It has been a week and then some. I think what I am missing most is the “normalcy” of the week – that is, normal work schedules, normal routines, and looking forward to Friday. I don’t know about you, but the days are a jumble to me with each one feeling like the last and the next. I feel a bit like I did when I was a child on summer break in the month of August. You know when the days felt endless and school would never start!

And, yet there have been pockets of “good things” in my days and so perhaps a bit of TGIF is in order!

Thankful

Yesterday was our “monthly” trip to the grocery store for much needed things (fresh produce, for one!!) We headed to Trader Joe’s and again there was a line, but for the most part a well-spaced, masked line! The limit to inside access has been even more reduced to assure that we can all be properly distanced from other shoppers. The store was immaculate and well-stocked. But it the best part was the simple kindness of the other shoppers and the Trader Joe’s staff – both were a balm to my weary spirit. The bouquet above was a gift from Trader Joe’s for helping to bag my groceries. I did not realize how much the simple interaction with strangers was something I was missing. I am basking in the glow of those simple things today, and so thankful!

Generosity

I have been amazed at the simple forms of giving that have been showing up around the internet! From free things in all sorts of places to helpful tips and tricks for all sorts of things – there are some in the universe working to balance out the unfairness of these days. I thought I’d share a few of the things I found this week with you all! First, Made by Rae just posted an excellent tutorial in which she shows clearly how to measure for pants that fit – even in the rise! I spent some time this week “cranking out” face masks and learned that not all faces are made the same. I found this pattern fits a variety of sizes and includes a “nose wire” option! Milk Street Kitchen has made all their online classes available through the end of April.

Inspiration

This week has had some lovely inspiration! This morning the patterns from Making No. 9 / Simple showed up on Ravelry! And curiously, crochet items have been calling to me (because of Sarah’s gorgeous blanket and Mary’s 100 Day project) But then Churchmouse Yarns sent this and I have a case of the “I want this bad” (also I love that they are also echoing the joy of Sarah’s blanket with One Big Granny Square! (Perhaps the pillow is a good place to start? Lol) I cannot crochet, but I would really love to learn. I tried a few years ago, but it was truly a struggle and I gave up but maybe this is the thing I need to keep my brain focused right now!

Finally, poetry

Poetry has become a daily necessity for me. And this morning’s poem – Peace Path from The Slowdown moved me greatly and I immediately checked out a book of her poetry from my library. (and yes, Heid E. Erdrich is Louise Erdrich’s sister!)

That is all I have for this week… I hope your weekend is full of weekend things! See you all back here on Monday! I am pulling out my “big camera” and hope to get a photo I can share. Carole and Vicki… how about some Macro Monday!?

April Promise | 4.10.20

April Promise | 4.10.20

Another week… another Friday…and joy of joys, it is snowing in Pittsburgh this morning. Yes, that’s right… snow! On all the tender new leaves. On the lilac blooms. On the magnolia blooms. Sigh.

Today is day four of my 100 Day Project and these moments of creatively stitching have been rays of sunshine in my day! You can follow my journey via Instagram, which I think is the perfect platform for sharing my days progress. I am happy that the plan in my head is flowing beautifully into my stitches.

I will begin the first clue of Larissa Brown’s Lunar Fade MKAL later today AND!!! Clue Two of Romi’s MKAL will drop today as well! And tomorrow the final clue of Coopknits Nimue socks will be out so this weekend will be all knitting, all the time!

To avoid any new temptations, I have been **trying** to avoid Ravelry this week. Key word…trying! LOL It seems that it was a “cloudy” week there! Did you see Cloudesley and Cloud Cover? Yeah…they are awesome, and both have been rattling around my head a bit. I also cannot get Mary’s inky navy sweater out of my head and I might have identified a “hole” in my warm weather wardrobe! However, I have not begun looking for any inky navy yarns…yet.

It was a week of lots.of.baking! Yesterday I made these brownies…and yowza, they are so good! And today I am baking my first loaf of sourdough bread! (I have my fingers crossed that it rises!)

If you, like me, are doing all kinds of Zoom get togethers… I found these tips and tricks to be exceedingly helpful!

I listened to an excellent Life Kit this week all about focusing while reading, which has been a huge struggle for me recently!

That’s all I have for this week! Have a good weekend (and Happy Easter, if you celebrate!) See you all back here next week!

April Promise | 4.3.20

April Promise | 4.3.20

Another week, another un-Friday! March was the longest year of my life and how is it only April 3? However, I am managing to keep my mind occupied and away from activities that allow it to stray to worried thinking!

First, Steve thanks all of you for your birthday wishes! He wants you all to know it was the perfect day – a day at home that was all about him! He is the one person who is not stressed about sheltering at home – it is his favorite thing ever! The cake was incredibly delicious! (although next time I will halve the frosting recipe) It is moist and reminds me of brownies…but so.much.better. This is absolutely a recipe I will make again!

This week I spent lots of time happily noticing that despite the insanity that the world is these days, spring is blind to the uncertainty and slowly, steadily, each day it shares a new promise. My forsythia are a riot of yellow, the bridal–wreath has a veil of white lace, any my saved-from-the-dump lilac has dozens and dozens of dark purple flower buds! I have rhubarb leaves unfurling, the raspberries are getting new leaves, and the garden is calling to me. (I am ignoring the bushes that are screaming to be trimmed, and the yard that needs to be mowed – another month at home allows for the luxury of being able to take time to get the least favorite tasks done, amirite?)

I really tried to stay focused on small things. diversions, distractions, and remembering to breathe. The following are some things that have been the most pleasant distractions this week:

I discovered Patrick Stewart reading #ASonnetADay He is brilliant and I have loved every lovely word of them, but the best is when William Shakespeare retweets them!

Baking was truly a life-saver for me this week. I baked lots! I savored every step from making to the clean up – which for me was always the least fun part, but this week I welcomed the task! I also spent time tending my sourdough starter! My question for you all is this: Have you baked banana bread this week? You are not alone! (and if you didn’t, this is the bandwagon you want to get on ASAP!)

Poetry remains my favorite distraction and I have found so.many.new.poems on Shelter in Poems:

This week, there were so many moments of unexpected kindness…and I am profoundly grateful for each one.

And, finally… later today, I will begin the first clue of Romi’s Mystery Shawl!

I would say “let the weekend begin” but in these days of the never-ending weekend, it seems a moot point! I will be back on Monday and hope that you are all staying home, washing you hands, and flattening that damned curve!

Photo by PhotoMIX Ltd. from Pexels

 

Friday With More Perspective

Friday With More Perspective

You cannot see the wood for the trees. — John Heywood

This week brought increased worry for both the rapidly increasing numbers of the sick as well as all those who are caring for them. The stories don’t sound like something from a first-world country, but rather they sound like the horror stories from a war zone or a third-world country that you might vaguely notice in the news.

I read this post yesterday and it really made a huge impact on me. Gratitude + Perspective is my new focus. Less complaining. Less rose-colored glasses views. Less meaningless lists. Less foolishly looking back at unimportant things with misplaced longing.

But, it’s not all less…because there is so much more! More heartfelt conversations with loved ones. More prayers for the sick and those caring for them. More gratitude that I have a home to shelter in and that I can easily communicate with my children. More gratitude that my library is serving the community mightily from a distance. More gratitude that I have no lack of projects to work on. More gratitude that I have an abundance of food. And, finally… more gratitude in just staying home!

Thank you, Carolyn for helping me adjust my perspective!

I do have some “lighter” things to share… things to, you know, STAY HOME and do!

Have you wanted to learn to crochet? There’s a CAL for that! Thank you, Casapinka!

How about knitting a bit of Wool Week? The hat pattern is out today!

I don’t know how this pattern appeared on my radar, but it would be the perfect spring shawl!

Then there was this from Lori Versaci. Gorgeous, but and the color combinations in the test knits are what really caught my eye!

That is all I have for this week. Again my mantra… stay home, wash your hands, and stay well!

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