Mary Oliver

"Tell me, what is it you plan to do

with your one wild and precious life?"

Saturday, June 30, 2012

A Lovely, Lazy Saturday

I spent my Saturday puttering around and trying to stay cool, much like most of the past week. I have been trying to do a little yard work every morning before the heat becomes unbearable, and then working indoors on some of the many decluttering projects that are on my list. This morning, I went through my knitting pattern binders, culling the duplicates and putting loose ones in the correct binder. All the while with two fans going and periodically taking short reading breaks. Nice schedule, really. I've been working on Melissa's room/craft room for a couple of days now, trying to get it done the way I want it, instead of crisis management, if that makes sense. I still have a couple of tote bags to go through, but I'll get there.


I've also been trying to finish up a few knitting projects, as I've reached the critical mass number. Oh, who am I kidding? There is no critical mass number. But I would like to get a couple of the baby sweaters finished up, and I'd also like to finish the Wingspan shawl, so I can get back to work on the cotton Cardi I started last weekend. I'd love to be able to wear it when school starts.


Speaking of school, I also have a bit of planning to do there, but I'm kind of waiting until I meet with someone in my department. Meanwhile, I keep jotting ideas down and hoping I'll be able to make sense of them once the year starts. I really am quite excited about the new challenge!

There is another thunderstorm going on outside (we had a bad one last night), and I hope it breaks this heat wave, but I'm not counting on it. Hope your summer is oing well!

Friday, June 29, 2012

Just For Fun

Me, circa early 80's. Gotta love those shades!

Tuesday, June 26, 2012


Now that I'm home, I really, really have to do some serious decluttering! I actually did clean out my clothes closet and dresser shelf last week (the one day I was home), but it was sort of cheating because I mostly shoved stuff in plastic bins instead of thoughtfully culling stuff. But I needed that one little moment of feeling like I was making a start, so there it is.

I have a ridiculous number of thrifted sheets that I want to craft with, but my crafting and sewing stuff is all spread out and stuffed here, there, and everywhere, making it next to impossible to do anything. Coincidentally, I read this post about how fear is related to why we procrastinate our crafting, and I'm hoping this gives me the incentive I need. Especially since I just bought three more sheets from the thrift store this evening!


I took time out of my errand running today to sit on the beach for an hour and knit on my Wingspan. I love the subtle color changes of the Lorna's Laces yarn; the yarn is from ADD Knitter's destash sale from a couple of months ago. And I love the pattern! It's easy and addicting. I'm on the third triangle already, and I'm already thinking about knitting one up in worsted weight.


The weather was just gorgeous today; yesterday's storm cleared out the humidity and the temperature was around 80 degrees, which meant I was able to turn off the air conditioner and enjoy the Bay breezes. Which was good, since the weather for the rest of the week is supposed to be brutal.
Not sure what my plans are for tomorrow, but I'm sure some knitting is involved.


Monday, June 25, 2012

Jersey Shore Weekend

What a lovely trip we had. I was a little nervous about it, because not only had I not met any of these people before, Steve hadn't seen them for about thirty years! I'm glad he is reconnecting with family members (cousins) though and I wanted to be supportive about it and the payoff was a perfectly lovely weekend.


We ate breakfast Sunday morning at Mustache Bill's Diner; it was featured on Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives, and was well worth the wait.

Gratuitous daisy photo.
Afterwards, we visited the Barnegat Lighthouse, at the north end of Long Beach Island.


In the afternoon, we walked up to the beach and sat for a relaxing hour or so.


I was able to knit a lot on the Wingspan on the drive home, since Steve did all the driving. I am really enjoying the pattern; it was perfect for car knitting. And the wedges/triangles are kind of addicting. We didn't run into much traffic, but the last thirty miles were pretty harrowing, due to a massive rain storm. It turned out that we were the last car across the Chesapeake Bay Bridge before it was temporarily closed.
I was definitely glad to make it back safely. Tomorrow I have errands to run and a house to clean. And maybe a little more knitting to do. Not necessarily in that order. It's summer, after all!


Sunday, June 24, 2012

Traveling Knitting

I brought two projects with me on this trip to the Jersey Shore, and thank goodness I did. I was making excellent progress on the Tidal sweater when I realized I had only brought one ball of yarn for it. One! What a rookie mistake. Thankfully I had also brought the yarn for Wingspan, otherwise I'd have been out of knitting, and I don't even want to imagine what the trip home would be like. What did I used to do before knitting? I can't even remember anymore.

Here's a rare shot of Steve, in the back yard of the house we visited.

Great view, yes?

We went to a little tourist area last night for ice cream and caught part of the sunset.

We visited a lighthouse and had breakfast at a cool diner today; photos next time.

Friday, June 22, 2012

Summer. For Real.

This has been such an odd beginning to the summer. My former father in law was buried last Friday, and today I attended the funeral for my sister's father in law. I hope the funeral season is over now.

It has been incredibly hot, which is why I'm so enjoying the thunderstorm we are having right this very minute. It's dark and windy, and the rain is pelting the windows. Hopefully it will bring some relief from the heat as well.

I bought some Classic Elite Pebbles yarn at a 40% discount while I was in the Outer Banks. I bought two balls in a mint blue-green, probably for a baby item.
I also bought eleven balls in a nice, summery green, so I can make a sweater for me. I thought about doing the Spring Garden Tee, but I decided to make Tidal instead. I really prefer wearing cardigans, and this one seems to be a good match for this yarn.

It's a bottom up, which I think will be a good knit to start on our car ride up to New Jersey in the morning. Yes, I'm going to the beach again. Tough life, eh?

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Beach Days

My niece went for a walk with me last night; isn't she beautiful?

Since today was our last day, I went down to the beach early and was rewarded by a lack of crowds. The water was much calmer, so I was able to enjoy it.

And I was able to finish my new dishcloth as well.

Tomorrow's plans? Cleaning up my neglected house. And maybe a little more beach time.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Beach Time

I find it so interesting that beaches look so different. "My" beach is the Chesapeake Bay, and it's usually calm, whereas the beach I'm at now, the Outer Banks of North Carolina, usually has fantastic waves. As a matter of fact, the three days prior to my visit, the surf was so rough, no swimming was allowed, as a safety precaution.


I've done a lot of reading, knitting, and napping, as well as going to the beach during the two days I've been here. I also visited the local knit shop and a bookstore, which means I've started two more knitting projects. At this rate, I'm never going to finish anything! This is a dish cloth I will finish quickly; it's made from a crazily colored skein of Plymouth Yarn Fantasy Naturale, my favorite wash cloth yarn. This pattern is the Double Bump, a new one for me, and I like it a lot. It should cheer me up when I do dishes, don't you think?


I also took a walk or two with my parents' dog, Bailey. Here she is, her little tongue dragging in the heat.

I head home tomorrow, and then Steve and I will be going north to Long Beach Island, New Jersey, for a weekend stay at his cousin's beach house rental. Maybe next week I can actually get some things done around the house. Not that I'm complaining, mind you. Beach time is always a good time, in my opinion.

Monday, June 18, 2012

Home Again, Albeit Briefly.

A great picture of Sinon, taken last night while Meredith and I were watching an episode of The Forsythe Saga, my new favorite series.
Ryan was working on this amazing project; he's cutting out hundreds of rectangles, using comic books, and is going to ModgePodge them onto a desk top, for his new workspace at Etsy. I can't wait to see the finished project.
Ollie wasn't interested in the movie; she wanted to play ball.
Sinon, as the most relaxed cat ever.
The trip back today was so good, that I couldn't wait to share some of my pictures. The most amazing part of the trip was the hour I spent at Palisades Park along the Hudson River, between the Tappan Zee Bridge and the NJ Turnpike. I'll let the pictures tell the story.





Under the GW Bridge.



The view from the Chesapeake Bay Bridge, twenty minutes from home.
Tomorrow I head south, to the North Carolina Outer Banks. I love summer!



I am heading home this morning. To help pass the time while I drive, I treated myself to a book on tape. Well, actually, it's a book on cd, but I think of it as tape for some reason. It's Noah's Compass, by Anne Tyler. I'm pretty sure I've read it already, since I read all of her books as soon as they are published, but I don't really remember this one, so I'm looking forward to it.

Here's a last look at Ollie; she seemed to tire of my paparazzi ways.

My future son-in-law, Ryan, just started working at Etsy, in Brooklyn, and he gave me these three pins. Cute, huh? He knew I'd love them!

More photos from my wanderings yesterday:





Enjoy your Monday!

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Summer Is Here

My summer has started with a plethora of activity, all emotion filled. My last day at the school I've worked at for my entire fifteen year career was on Friday, which was the same day my former father-in-law was buried. On Saturday, I drove Meredith to Stamford so she wouldn't have to take the bus back home. It was a long day, but with some good quality time. Here's Ollie, enjoying some quality time too!


I'm heading back home on Monday, so I can spend a few days with my parents and sister in the Outer Banks, which will be bittersweet, since this is the last time my folks will be renting a summer house. My mom finally retired, which means their income will decrease. Great for my mom, but also a time of adjustment for her.

No wonder my knitting is reflective of all these changes! I can't seem to focus on any one project long enough to finish anything! Now I'm working on the Jubilee Cardigan, from the 2010 edition of Interweave Knits Holiday Gifts. Using stash yarn, I might add.


I have so many things on my mind that I'd like to do this summer: clear out clutter, sew, spend more time outside, cook fresh food, play card games with my daughter, plan for my new classes, knit, slow down. Mostly the same things I want to do every summer.

I'm having such a hard time writing and I think it's because of the whirlwind of the last three weeks. Right now, I'm sitting outside at a Starbucks in Norwalk, Connecticut, enjoying the sunshine, cool breeze, and solitude. I have a novel, my knitting, my iPad, and my thoughts. There is something so freeing about being in a city where I don't know anyone.

Some pictures from my walk:



Definitely a nice way to spend a beautiful day in June.