Mary Oliver

"Tell me, what is it you plan to do

with your one wild and precious life?"

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

A State of Flux

Flux, according to Webster's dictionary, means the frequent and usually sudden passing from one condition to another.  I am attributing my absence, at least partly, to my being in a state of flux.  One minute I'm highly productive, the next I'm a slug.  Happy, then sad, and so on, ad nauseum.  All perfectly normal but a bit frustrating nonetheless.       So let's talk knitting, shall we?  I finally ripped the hem of my Stopover and put in a plain rib instead of the color work; I was too tired to bind off last night, but plan to do so tonight so I can give it a good soak.  
I really don't know if the fact that I knit top down for the new hem when the sweater was originally bottom up will have any effect on the way it looks or not, but it can't be worse than the amount of rolling it did as it was.  Again, this was an error on my part, not the pattern.
I still haven't fully committed to participating in the DC March on Saturday, but I'm leaning towards it.  Again, another example of my flux state.  In the event I go, I'm going to wear this hat, having donated the unflattering-on-me Pussyhat to a coworker who was very happy to get it.  Frankly, I'm not someone who can wear a hat well, but in the interest of straddling the line, I decided on this luscious raspberry yarn and a more traditional pattern.
I'll take pictures if I take the leap.  Take care, dear ones! I fear we're entering the scary unknown.

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Lovely Lazy Days

This photo perfectly depicts how I spent the majority of my snow days.  From left to right: book, wool lap blanket, flannel pjs, and in the far right of the photo, Gracie.  You may have to "embiggen" the photo to see her, to borrow a term from Yarn Harlot.
 I read the last four of Louise Penny's books over three days and while I'm so sorry I'm done, I also realize I may actually be able to do other things now, like knit.  Quite awhile ago I wrote that I rarely read books that totally absorbed me anymore, but these absolutely did.  I've loved every minute I spent reading this series, and on Monday, I read the last two back to back, from morning to night.  It was a wonderful way to spend a snow day.   I decided to finally fix the hem of my Stopover sweater.  The way it rolled up really bothered me, but know that it wasn't a pattern issue, it was a knitter issue.   I was super nervous about it but remembered that almost everything knitting related is fixable, so I started by cutting off the cast on edge.   
I've gotten all the body stitches on the needles and it's ready to go, but I put it aside to begin a hat or two.
I've had the pattern since it came out, but for some reason I hadn't cast on, and when I went through the stash, it turned out I didn't have pink yarn, other than the yarn I have for my Mary Rebecca sweater. So I ventured out to my LYS today and bought these two beauties.  The one in the right is Cascade 220, and the one on the left is a new to me yarn, Susquehanna Knitting Company, from Maryland.  I know a colleague who is going to the March, so the Cascade hat will be my gift to her, and the other one will be for me, but here's my dilemma.  I'm not sure I'm brave enough to go.  I have always considered my myself to be a "hippie, born ten years too late", but it seems I may less of a risk taker than I want to believe.  What are your thoughts?

Monday, January 9, 2017

Happy Snow Day

 I got my wish for snow!  We only got six inches, due to a lot of sleet beforehand that was probably supposed to be snow but it is enough and I love it.  It helped that I didn't lose power.  Snow is much more cosy seen from inside a warm house.  But I did venture down to the beach on Sunday for some pictures and a chance to wear a lot of hand knits.
Most of the time has been spent enjoying the peace and quiet and snuggle time.
 I don't know who is happier, Gracie or me?
 Just heard school is closed for Tuesday too, so glorious day!  

Friday, January 6, 2017

Winter Weather

Jim Cantore is in town, so you probably know what that means: a winter storm is headed our way.  We are under a blizzard warning, which seems a bit excessive, but apparently it's the high winds, along with an estimate of 8-12 inches of snow that qualifies as a blizzard.  I know that doesn't seem like a lot of snow compared to many areas of the country, but our region has almost no budget for snow removal, so it will effectively shut us down for a few days.   As I was talking to my students and coworkers about the weekend, I realized the snow really wasn't changing my plans that much.  Other than cancelling a tutoring session, I'll be doing pretty much the same thing as I would have done without the snow!  Lounging around reading and knitting was my plan anyway.   
I was sitting in my yarn room last night and Gracie decided it was time to explore the bookcase.
 After she finished exploring, she snuggled down on the back of my chair.  She may not ever sit in my lap, but she likes to keep as close as she can. Silly girl. 
I'll post snow pictures as soon as I have some!  On with the weekend and the winter weather!

Saturday, December 31, 2016

The Quiet Season

I, like most of you, love the calmness of the week between Christmas and New Year's Day, and this year I've appreciated it even more.  I spent most of the 26th in bed, just catching up on my rest, even though I didn't feel stressed about Christmas.  I think it was a residual tiredness from being sick, but whatever the reason, I gave in to it and rested.  I spent some time this week catching up with friends, but still had a lot of quiet time at home.  I started taking down the Christmas decorations but haven't quite finished because I'm still enjoying the smell of my tree and the twinkling of the lights, even after taking all the ornaments off.  I'd like to get it all taken care of before I return to work, but if I don't, I'll be okay with it. Another benefit of living alone.
I've done some knitting, but mostly I've been on a reading binge.  I'm on the 8th book in the Louise Penny series and I am smitten with her writing.  It's a mystery series but it's so much more than that.  I think I read one review that said it's more literature than mystery and I agree, in the sense that it makes me think about the big ideas of kindness, and love, and integrity.  Give her a go if you're looking for a good read. 
Speaking of love and kindness, I've been reaching out to strangers as I've gone about my errands.  I've always been comfortable with talking to people I don't know, but I've been doing it even more lately.  Probably looking for human contact since I spend more time alone, but also as a way to foster kindness and connectedness in this scary new world we're entering.  Anyway, it's been good.
My daughter, Melissa, did a watercolor of Gracie for me for Christmas and I love it.  I'm going to frame it and hang it in my yarn room.
I took this photo of my parents with their favorite child, Bailey; I think they both look amazing.  Mom will be 77 next month and Dad will be 80 in May, and they are both still very active, which keeps them young.  My mom is a dynamo, with more energy than I have most days.
Another photo of the precious one.  I gave them a set of photo coasters of Bailey, that I bought from Snapfish, and they absolutely loved it.  
This is Gracie's new favorite morning spot.  I took this photo yesterday,
 and this one this morning!  Almost identical.
 I couldn't resist sharing this beautiful picture of her in front of the tree. 
And I used the Best Nine app, but couldn't get the photo without the text for some reason.  I was surprised there were only three photos of Gracie, but not surprised by all the knitting.
And finally, the picture of myself I like so well.  This is the one I took on Christmas Day, and I like it so much because it shows me how truly content I am.  I am in a very different place than I was last year at this time, but it is okay.  In fact, it's better than okay, it's good.  I know that whatever 2017 has in store for me, I'm pretty sure I will be okay.  Best wishes to all.

Sunday, December 25, 2016

Merry, Merry Christmas

I had a wonderful Christmas Day and hope you did too.  I am so much happier than I expected to be.  Life is so good.

Merry Christmas

Wishing you and yours a peaceful and joy filled Christmas!  
Love from me and my camouflaged Christmas cat, Gracie!