Mary Oliver

"Tell me, what is it you plan to do

with your one wild and precious life?"









Tuesday, October 10, 2017

October is My Favorite

October is my favorite time of year, although it still feels like summer around here.  I'm trying to get my house ready for the cozy season, even though I'm still having to use the air conditioner.  Last week, I hung some twinkle lights in my kitchen, and I love them!  Alicia Paulson was my inspiration; I've wanted to do this for years, ever since I first saw her blog photos, and I finally did it.  It makes washing my dishes so much more pleasant, especially since my ceiling light quit working.  And the smell of the Mrs. Myers Apple Cider dish soap makes it even better.
The skies have been simply gorgeous lately.  I took these pictures last Thursday after work, but the morning sky has been just as lovely.
I found a surprising amount of sea glass on my walk too.  One of these days I'm going to use the glass for something, but until then, I'll just enjoy having little bowls of it here and there around the house.
I finished my Bousta Beanie well ahead of my Rhinebeck deadline.
I deviated from the pattern at the very end; instead of switching back to the dark grey, I finished up with the blue, for a brighter look.
And because I finished early, I started a second one.  My friend, Lori, had cataract surgery last Monday, and isn't going to be able to see well enough in time to knit her own, so I'm knitting hers for her.  I started on it last night, while watching my Sunday night PBS shows.
This is Homecoming week at school; the theme is A Night at the Movies.  One of the activities is a door decorating contest, and I think my students did a phenomenal job on our door!
I'll finish this disjointed post with a picture of Gracie, relaxing as usual.
As always, I wish you peace and joy.

Friday, September 29, 2017

TGIF, or The Honeymoon is Over

Well. This was the longest week.  I can't fully express how happy I am that it is officially the weekend.  I had a tough day with two of my three classes, for various reasons, although it really is right on schedule.  The newness of a new school year has worn off for the kids, and if I'm honest, I'm sure it's the same for me.  The phrase, pearls before swine, kept running through my head, as I feel like I try so hard to make my lessons engaging and relevant, and my kids just want to do the easiest thing they can get away with. And in speaking with a few other teachers today after school, it's not only me and my kids who are feeling this way.  We all need the space of the weekend to regroup.  And we will, just like every other year over the past twenty-one years I've been doing this tiring, magical, exhausting and exhilarating thing we call teaching.  

I am looking forward to my girls' getaway to Rhinebeck, which is only three weeks away.  We had a planning meeting of sorts on Thursday night, to map out our itinerary.  We're going to leave after work on Thursday this year, and drive for about four hours before stopping overnight, so we can get to to the Rhinebeck area earlier.  There are a number of events we want to attend on Friday afternoon and evening, so we need to arrive earlier than we have in the past. We may be overly ambitious, but we're going to see how much we can fit in. I can't wait!!

 

My hat is slow going, despite the easy pattern, due to the limited knitting time I have.  I'm hoping to finish it this weekend.  Of course, I also hope to do some caulking, painting, and a few other maintenance chores, so we'll see how it plays out.  
 
I met Melissa at the Chrysler Museum last weekend to see the Rene Lalique glass exhibit.  I love so much about the pieces from the Art Deco period.  Everything seems so elegant, yet also simple somehow. 
 
 
It is really wonderful to live so close to this museum.  It's another one of the reasons I love living in Norfolk. (Since I can't live in NYC that is.)
 
 
And finally, as these pictures illustrate, Gracie has been making sure all of my clothing is sufficiently covered in cat hair.  This is a skirt I left on the bed one morning, after deciding to wear something else.
 
And my new black jeans didn't escape her ministrations either.  Guess that's the price I pay for not putting everything away properly.
 
Hope everyone has a lovely weekend.  I still have a few New York memories to share, so bear with me.
 
Peace and joy to you.

 

Monday, September 25, 2017

New York Botanical Garden

Unlike my desire to visit The Cloisters, I had never had an urge to visit the NYBG.  Until I saw that a huge Dale Chihuly exhibit was there, that is.  I love his work and knew I couldn't pass up this opportunity, so off I went, on a gorgeous and mild Wednesday.  It was a 90 minute trip from where my daughter lives in Brooklyn, but it was well worth it.  It turns out that it would have been worth the trip even without the Chihuly works, but with them?  Simply amazing.  

I'm not commenting on these, but know that these are not all of the photos I took, nor are they all of the pieces in the show.  I also left out the beautiful landscapes and gardens, unless the glass was part of the scene.  I'm so glad I made the trip to see it all, and I was incredibly lucky to have such marvelous weather!  I hope you enjoy them. 

 
 
 
   

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Mostly Knitting Photos

I swear I thought I had posted the finished Close To You shawl, but the last one I shared was the brown one, so here it is.  Can't wait to use this one!
I made it past the halfway point on my Stratcona scarf, in Quince & Co.'s Sparrow, when I messed up the pattern, and I haven't picked it back up since.  
Instead, I made a log cabin dishcloth; I finished it, but haven't photographed it yet.  Fun and mindless beach knitting.
And here is my Bousta Beanie; I don't exactly love my color choices, but I'm okay with them.  As long as I finish before Rhinebeck.  I ordered the yarn from Tolt.  They were terrific last year when I bought the yarn for my Stopover, and they didn't disappoint this time either.
Finally, pictures of Gracie in her happy place: sleeping on my bed.  I just love the way her paws are folded here.
Here too, now that I notice it.  
 
Take care of yourselves; it's the surest way to peace and joy.  Indeed, it's probably the only way.

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

My "New" Year

Even though I promised my next post would be all about the New York Botanic Garden, I wanted to do a quick "new" year post first.  One of the things I adore about teaching is the number of times I get to start with a clean slate.  Now that I teach high school, I have two fresh starts per year, which is so liberating.  All of this is to say that my latest new year has been going smoothly.  We've already held our open house, and while I haven't totally found my rhythm with each class yet, I'm almost there.    

And just as I suspected, now that I'm back to work, I've decided to try and take care of lots of other things around my house as well.  I've been painting a few windows and trim, trying to repair a leaky awning on my front porch, prepping the front porch railing so I can paint it, and of course, continuing to maintain my yard.  Best of all, I finally fixed this weird hole inside the yarn room closet that's been driving me crazy.  It's an access to the bathroom water pipes, and when we had a plumbing problem a few years ago, the plumber did a crap job replacing the access panel.  As in, there was a big gap that allowed air from the crawl space inside the closet.  I could always smell the damp, under-the-house-dirt smell when I was in there, even though I tried to seal it off.  I finally bought a wood panel and a roll of moisture barrier stuff yesterday, and closed it off.  I'm sure there's a more conventional way of closing it off than the way I did it, but I don't care.  My way worked, and it doesn't look half bad.

 

I have been knitting a little, and I'm getting excited for my annual trip to Rhinebeck!  Last year, my friends and I all knit the Baable hat, from the 2015 Shetland Wool Week; this year, we're doing the Bousta Beanie, which is the 2017 pattern.    

No pictures this time, as it's late, but there will be more than enough to see in my next post.  Until then, peace and joy.

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

New York, Part Three: The Cloisters

While waiting so long to post about my trip isn't the best decision I've made in my blogging life, it does have the advantage of allowing me to revisit some of my memories.  So even though today was the first day with my students, here are some pictures from my very delayed visit to the other part of the Metropolitan Art Museum: the Cloisters.
 
I have had this on my wish list for at least four or five years, but never made the time to go until this summer, and I'm so glad I did. I don't think of myself as a fan of medieval art, but it turns out that I enjoy more of it than I realized.  The tapestries, the architectural features of the church, and the stained glass were all beautiful.
Luckily, I made it to the grounds in time to take a guided tour, which focused primarily on the gardens.
The white haired woman docent was wonderful, and made my visit much more enjoyable and informative than it would have been.
After the tour, I had a cup of coffee and knit on my shawl while overlooking one of the garden areas.  Serene.
 
A view of the Hudson River, as seen from one of the terraces.  It wasn't as gloomy as this makes it seems.
And if the Cloister gardens weren't enough, the walk to and from the entrance to the subway is another gorgeous garden, which is part of the Fort Tyron Park.
 My next post:  New York Botanical Garden, located in the Bronx.  
 
Peace and joy to you!