A bit of whimsy | 7.1.22

A bit of whimsy | 7.1.22

Hello, July. I am so glad I am filling my days with some whimsy so I can avoid thinking about the looming July holiday that this year won’t feel like something to celebrate at all.

Who knows what women can be when they are finally free to be themselves. ― Betty Friedan

I am glad that SCOTUS is in recess until the first Monday in October. Very glad. Although I did get a bit teary-eyed when I watched Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson become the first female Black justice! I am eagerly looking forward to her dissents!

But let’s bring on the whimsy, shall we?

My inspiration

And my interpretation…

The watercolor painting continues and this week I finally “broke out” some actual watercolor paper and taped it to my brand new gator board and even started painting! Yes, I am done fighting curling corners… oh boy. My inspiration this week was a photo from Presque Isle on Lake Erie. As you can see… the learning curve on color mixing is steep but I am not giving up!

A bit of whimsy for the bathroom!

There was non-gnome whimsical knitting this week as well. I had unearthed a bag full of the long discontinued Crystal Palace Cotton Chenille. I think I originally bought all that yarn to knit this washcloth which was originally published in Melanie Falick’s Weekend Knitting book. But I thought it might be perfect for the Bodhi Leaf Washcloth from Ease and it was! I have knit two (one is in the shower currently) and I have plans for several more. I also knit one from linen, but it is very small. I have not tried it yet, but I think it would be a good facial exfoliator. This knitting is in the Super-fast Gratification category… I can knit a Bodhi in less than an hour. Really. Cast on to weaving in the two ends… in under an hour and I can easily get two cloths from a skein!

Finally, some garden whimsy… or perhaps necessity? I present one bee watering station!

Ignore the weedy yard… there is little to no grass, but wow! Can we grow weeds!

I took the plant saucer who’s planter had broken and filled it with a couple of scoops of pea gravel and voilá! A place for bugs to drink! I have seen bumble bees, tiny butterflies, as well as a couple of large wasps all partaking! (Okay, maybe I am not so happy for the wasps, but they seemed to have no interest in myself or Sherman… they were just thirsty!) I have to fill it a couple of times a day… the evaporation rate is fast but repurposing things for the win!

And there you have it… some whimsy for my week! I hope you find some whimsy this weekend. I will be back on Monday! Have a good long weekend everyone!

A bit of whimsy | 7.1.22

A Bit of Whimsy | 6.24.22

The wee break I took last week inspired a new way of thinking about blogging…much needed inspiration.

Welcome to A Bit of Whimsy!

I am a person who is incredibly serious. Joking around is not easy for me and I don’t spend enough (any?) time creatively playing. However, I am working on including more lightness in my days.

These whimsy posts will help me be accountable to adding some playfulness to my week! (And if you find that you need some whimsy in your life, I invite you to join me!)

You must not ever stop being whimsical. ― Mary Oliver, Wild Geese

Okay, Mary Oliver… I am lisenting!!

One thing I did not imagine when Sarah Schira launched her Year of Gnomes was the whimsy that it would bring to my days. Silly me… can a gnome be anything but whimsical? Previous gnomes were fun, but this with this month’s gnomes – whimsy took over!

You might have seen Gnombleberry and Gnewt on IG, but here is another look at them. I stepped outside of the pattern and created something that fit me… a poem reading gnome with an over the shoulder bag. And a wee pocket for Gnewt… who is not at all certain that poem reading is for him, but he is going to try! It was all so much fun!

**Details for those interested. I knit the bag per the pattern instructions then I pinned the bag where I wanted it to sit on Gnombleberry and knit a single I-cord. I threaded the I-cord on a darning needle and went through all layers of the bag to create the folds you see. I knotted the I-cord and secured it with a stitch or two under the hat brim to make sure it stays on the “shoulder”. I used florist wire in the arm to bend it how I wanted. Gnewt’s pocket had zero fore-thought… I determined where it looked best once I had attached his arms and then picked up three stitches, and knit them in stockinette for 4 rows, slipping the first stitch of each row. I used the tails to stitch it to the body. And stitched Gnewt’s hand into the pocket to keep it secure. Look for more gnome creativity in the coming months!

The other very whimsical thing I have been engaging in is watercolor painting. It is very much a work in progress… and the struggle is very real. But I am sharing my latest attempt… the lavender in the tiny Patrón bottle. I am learning every time I pick up the brush and for now – that is a comfortable start. FYI… highlights and watercolor are a true challenge for me so the wee bits of highlights you see here are courtesy of a white Gellyroll pen which shows up more in the photo than it does in the painted image. But… I am learning!

Finally, the last bit of whimsy for this week came courtesy of Krista Tippet and The Pause.

And there you have my whimsical beginning! Now, I am heading out to spend some time soaking up the peace of the wild things (while pulling the gajillion thistles that pop up seemingly overnight in my gardens!)

Happy Friday everyone! See you all back here on Monday with my June word update!!

 

 

 

Friday thoughts | 5.27.22

Friday thoughts | 5.27.22

Bring poppies for a weary mind That saddens in a senseless din. — William Winter

One of the most fleeting of things… my poppies… and yet, perhaps I love them so much because they are so fleeting.

One thing I hope is not fleeting… our outrage at the gun violence of the last two weeks. May our fervor burn red like my poppies and light a fire under those who think doing nothing is our best choice.

I will be back on Monday with my May word update.

Friday Finds | 5.6.22

Friday Finds | 5.6.22

When April steps aside for May, like diamonds all the rain-drops glisten; fresh violets open every day; to some new bird each hour we listen. ― Lucy Larcom

I thought this quote was fitting, especially for the weekend weather forecast Pittsburgh has… lots and lots and lots of rain-drops. I am not complaining because with the weather we have had, it could as easily be snow (which I would be complaining about!)

However, it is May and that means Macro May! This month I am going to play a bit with my iPhone and see what I can learn. Of course, Apple had an article that was both inspiring and overwhelming. I think I need to get my tripod out..lol. Good thing I nabbed that photo last night, this morning that blown dandelion is just a stalk.

A bit of a sofa update for you all… yes, I have a chair to sit on. No, the sofa issue has not been solved (i.e. no new sofa, no new parts, no repaired light post…) And yes, I am  almost a raving lunatic at this point in time…But!! Steve fixed the storm door… so there is that.

This is not really a find… but perhaps a reminder… many of us (myself included) have put off things during the pandemic but one thing you should NOT put off is a colonoscopy. I called this week to schedule mine (I am now on the 5-year plan because my family history has a vibrant thread of colon cancer running through it… sigh) I think this colonoscopy will be the 5th one I have had (my first was at 30) and it amazes me that not much has changed since then… at least not that I have noticed. I confess I am not eager for that evening with a gallon jug of NyLYTELY, however I don’t need to worry about it until August. I chuckled at the scheduler who said she would update me on the COVID protocol closer to the date (as if COVID might not be a thing 3 months from now, lol)

Now how about a find or two?

First, I wanted to share a new podcast I discovered thanks to Ada Limón…As She Rises. This is from the podcast description:

As She Rises is …from Wonder Media Network. It brings together poems from artists throughout the US and territories that depict the effects of climate change on their home and their people. Each episode carries the listener to a new place through a collection of voices, local recordings and soundscapes. Stories span from the Louisiana Bayou, to the silent tundras of Alaska to the receding coastlines of Puerto Rico. Centering native voices and women of color, As She Rises personalizes the elusive magnitude of climate change.

I listened to season two while in Erie and it was really amazing. The poet reads their poem then there is a bit of a discussion with the hostess, Amanda Frances, that was both interesting and enlightening. I thought you all might enjoy listening to some beautiful poetry and a bit of a discussion on climate change with the poet. I have queued up season one to listen to this week!

Finally, it is #MeMadeMay which for me is really #MeMadeEveryDay! Yes, that is right, I have arrived at the point in my life where almost my entire wardrobe has been made by me. (Jeans and under garments are the only not-me-made items left in my wardrobe) I have been so inspired by the #MeMadeMay2022 thread on IG… it is my one guilty pleasure for the month! And, yes… I will be doing some sewing in May! Kym has inspired me to sit down and sew some knits!

There you go, Gentle Readers… have a great weekend! See you back here on Monday!

 

 

To Whom It May Concern | 3.25.22

To Whom It May Concern | 3.25.22

I have said this many times, that there seems to be enough room in the world for mediocre men, but not for mediocre women, and we really have to work very, very hard. — Madeleine Albright

Dearest Madam Secretary,

The news of your passing took me by surprise this week because, somehow, I was of the mindset that you would be here forever… If only. I have such incredible memories of you… starting with your becoming Madam Secretary. My goodness, that was such a note worthy event. You were The First (but absolutely not the last!) You were such an incredible breaker of glass ceilings and you were most certainly not mediocre! But my greatest joy ever was listening to you read your book, Fascism: A Warning… I imagined that what you shared must be similar to what your students heard in your classes, and perhaps… what other leaders heard when you spoke to them. You are leaving a void that will take many to fill but fortunately, you have inspired so many others and my hope is that those many others will rise up and fill that void in magnificent ways. I promise you that your memory is a blessing to so many. May you rest in power.

With Deepest Sympathies,

A Devoted Fan


Honorable Judge Brown Jackson,

I wanted to take a moment to send you my thoughts on The Senate Confirmation Hearing…aka Your Week In Hell. I am so very sorry that out of the hundreds of judgements that you have delivered, some…the mediocre…only focused on a very small handful. Do not fear, we all saw that they were doing there… Sadly, Irony died a very long time ago. The adage of glass houses seems to be most appropriate here, but they are blind and deaf to that. Sadly, the mediocre are never mute… and for a very brief moment I erroneously felt a bit of woman-ship with you. Many of us have been in meetings where we were interrupted…continuously… so please, forgive my white privilege in even momentarily thinking what I (and many other white women) experienced was in any way similar, it was not…at all. I also want to thank Cory Booker for showing us all so beautifully how to have someones back. And yet through the entire debacle, you maintained such incredible composure! You are a shining example for all of us! I am so eager for your confirmation to the Supreme Court. Your presence there is long overdue…and I, for one, am so glad you persevered. You are the best of all of us!

Sincerely,

A Joy-Full and Inspired American


Have a great weekend everyone, I will see you all back here on Monday with my word update!

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