Tiny Moment Tuesday | 4.10.18

Tiny Moment Tuesday | 4.10.18

Sometimes, those tiny moments all add up to an overwhelming moment that makes you stop and contemplate how you got there…

Last week was one of those weeks.

It all began with this very simple devotion from Henri Nouwen. Simple, but impactful…Giving and Receiving. I am good at one and horrible at the other. I love Henri Nouwen’s picture of giving and receiving in a yin-yang image. I spent much of the week considering why I struggle with the “receiving” portion of this symbiotic relationship. In every aspect of receiving… truly. Steve could tell you a million times of me getting upset with his help in the kitchen. I am very much of the mindset that it is much better to give than to receive. Yet, these simple words were like an arrow to my heart. I need to work on being a cheerful receiver. It is not easy, and it feels very uncomfortable to be on “the receiving end” of the equation.

Then, on Friday, Kym ushered in Poetry Month with this beautiful poem from Derek Walcott. And with those simple words, another spate of arrows struck my heart. I have printed the poem out and it is hanging at my desk. I have read it multiple times since Kym posted it and each time it overwhelms me with raw emotion and, yes, tears. On the heels of Michelle’s 5-day Self-Portrait Challenge where she pushed us to look at ourselves in new ways. As usual, she pushed me towards those uncomfortable edges of myself, but I managed to steer clear of them and superficially participate in each day’s assignment. This poem, however, brought that discomfort front and center.

So, this week, my tiny moment is me.

I am not writing this post to garner well wishes from you, Gentle Reader – in fact, I seriously debated turning off comments for this post.

However, what I am closing with is a question or two for you; how you deal with those laid bare moments – whatever they might be. Do you push the difficulty back in the corner and ignore it? Or do you take a more pro-active approach?

The Weekend and Seven Banned Words

The Weekend and Seven Banned Words

“Perhaps a lunatic was simply a minority of one.” – George Orwell, 1984

When the weekend began, I had no idea that before it was over we would be living in Orwell’s dystopian 1984 2017. It began on Friday night with a couple of Perfect Manhattan’s. And, I am not just saying that…nope, it is an evidence-based conclusion, rooted in fact! And, they were the ideal way start to the weekend! We had discussed during the week that we really were feeling in a rut with our Friday night eats, so we changed it up a bit. Meatballs instead of Salami, Lobster Dip instead of Hummus…why we even added in some onion rings! Three cheers for diversity!

Saturday, we still had snow on the ground but with quickly rising temperatures, I knew it would not last for long. After all, science-based evidence is clear that warming temperatures make the snow melt. There is no changing that, no matter how much I want the snow to stay, wish cannot make it so!

I also, sadly, did not get my super-secret knitting done on Friday and I feared being vulnerable to criticism on Christmas morning if I delivered an empty box filled only with an IOU, so I managed to do some covert knitting in the light of day! I am quite certain My recipient feels no sense of entitlement, but they still are deserving of this gift – so I feverishly knit on, grabbing a row or two here and there while no one was paying attention! And, with some sneaky persistence the knitting was done and now begins the seaming. It’s a good Monday task!

We got our annual visit from Santa and the Scott Township Fire Department rolled out the red carpet firetrucks for him! It is a high point of the season and feels so “small town”. I really love this little tradition!

Sunday, it rained most of the day. Hard. The melting of the snow kind of rain. AND, Sunday was a HUGE football day! There was a game for the ages: The Steelers vs The Patriots IN PITTSBURGH, and wonder of wonders – I actually rooted for those crazy Steelers! Perhaps I am finally becoming a Yinzer, n’at! Steve wanted “football foods” for the game. You’d think it was the Super Bowl or some such thing! Ha! So there was a mini-feast with more good eats and even a beer or two! It was an incredible game, even though we lost, thanks to that incredibly bad call in that last 28 seconds (because in any other football game the ball crossing the plane of the goal would be a touchdown, but apparently not in Pittsburgh)!

Finally, we come to the last two banned words: transgender and fetus… I cannot imagine that they actually think that by not saying these words it will change how people feel about themselves, their identity, or a choice that is intensely personal.

I am reminded that every single day I must embrace all that is different. I must support those who are defenseless with words and actions, and if I don’t understand something, I need to be open to new thoughts and ideas. John Lynch said it best, “We will not agree on every issue. But let us respect those differences and respect one another…”

Make it a good Monday!

P.S. I saw this late last night The CDC Poetry Project if any of you want to try your hand at a submission!

Tuesday Things, November 28

Tuesday Things, November 28

I had absolutely no clue what to write about today and then the swissmiss newsletter came!

And, especially this link!

I have:

Rosemary
Wire
Yarn

Perhaps a bit of a riff on this. I am thinking this will be the most festive accompaniment to my Christmas decorations! Who knew I would still have Rosemary growing at the end of November, but somehow I do! I wish you could smell it in here right now!

In a totally unrelated thing: why is it that lights that worked last year when you took them off the tree, magically no longer work this year when you are trying to put them on the tree? I am pretty sure there is a conspiracy in the Christmas light industry to ensure that you must buy new lights every year. GRRRR!

Hope your Tuesday is full of good smells and working lights!

KonMari Döstädning

KonMari Döstädning

Or, what I did on my weekend.

Who knew that while living worlds apart, Marie Kondo and Margareta Magnusson were traveling the same path. I am well into reading The Gentle Art of Swedish Death Cleaning (or döstädning) and it has invigorated me and filled with all kinds of KonMari joy!

Enter the weekend, and so began the dreaded task of closet cleaning.

As Monday dawns, I am sufficiently thrilled at the cleaning, sorting, and shedding of unwanted things. I have a nice stack to take to the resale shop as well as a huge stack heading off to good will. And, this morning my trash man will haul away those things that were relegated to the trash pile!

AND, I managed to finish up the volunteer budget work on Sunday afternoon!!

That is a huge load off my mind and I intend to use that freed up space to plot out my fall knitting and do some swatching and sweater planning this week! I did break down last week and swatched for “Rusty” and after figuring out gauge, I cast on Thursday night and by the end of the weekend I am almost half way done with the body.

This week my “to do” list is so much lighter, it almost feels like no list at all. And, for this Monday morning – that is a very good thing!

How was your weekend?

October what?

October what?

How on earth is it already October 20?!? Amirite?

But, how is this perfect fall weather? Outside of Monday when frost greeted Sherman and I for our morning constitutional, it has been most gloriously beautiful. Crisp, cool mornings that give way to sunny, warm days. This weather can just stay for a good long while!

Operation List Completion went very well this week, surprisingly and I am feeling decidedly accomplished!

AND, I have some details to share about the Charitable knitting I completed and blocked! It is Justyna Lorkowska’s Close to You pattern, and this might become my “hitchhiker”. Super fun to knit, an easy-to-memorize pattern, and it uses just one skein of sock yarn. I used some deep stash that I got eons ago from The Loopy Ewe. It is Fleece Artist sock yarn (I think 2/8 BFL, sorry I am not sure and the tag is long gone). I love how it turned out and I am thrilled to be helping support this cause: The Foster Success Foundation.

In the book category – I did have a more than slight moment of panic last night!! Two audiobook holds have come through: What (the hell) Happened and Little Fires Everywhere. I have 21 days to finish them…can I do it? (Also, of course this happened after I started listening to Life after Life on a recommendation from Mary!)

For those that love Anthony Bourdain’s Parts Unknown… he is in Pittsburgh this week! You won’t want to miss it! Really!!

Now, how about some links?

  • First up, Marie Greene has a new sweater pattern: Azimuth
  • Plucky Knitter has a new pattern collection out, but I especially love Martin. I love the versatility of a vest and this one has some cute details!
  • There are some new things from Kirsten Kapur and Thea Colman! I love this yarn pairing and really wish I was going to the reception at Jill’s studio!
  • Animal Bonnet is just in time for Halloween!
  • Electra is beautiful (and it is a lovely shape as well!)
  • Tamangur… I love the yarn and the construction of this sweater. (P.S. The yarn is lovely and very affordable!)
  • These socks… or maybe these… oy! (And, really… the Socks of Narnia is an awesome collection and reading knitters are my favorite)

And, finally… I am doing a bit of work with my dear friend, Beth Smith. She has some new classes coming and some other wonderful surprises! If you are not on her mailing list, you should be!!

That is all I have for today, enjoy your weekend and I will see you back here on Monday!

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