sprite writes
broodings from the burrow

January 18, 2021

noticeably lighter
posted by soe 1:38 am

The sun is setting at 5:15 this week, which means there’s ambient light until nearly six. I haven’t done a great job recently at getting outside the apartment during daylight hours, so I’m appreciative that the sun is now working in my favor.

I’m wondering about the feasibility of packing up my work laptop when I’ve got 3 hours between video meetings (which, to be fair, is only like 3 times a week) and taking it up to the park to work at a picnic table on my cell phone hotspot. I did it some in the few weeks between being sent home and the mask mandate, but after that it was just too much work. It always feels like it would be too disruptive to my day to make the switch, but I wonder if being out in the sunshine would make me more productive.

I suppose it can’t hurt to try.

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January 17, 2021

new things
posted by soe 1:07 am

I am loving the new stripey socks I am knitting. They are the pleasantly addictive kind with four rows of each color, which means they’re a lot like potato chips or cookies. You swear you’ll just knit/eat this one more and then you’ll stop. And suddenly you’re staring at an empty row of Oreos or a half-gone bag of chips or several inches of project. Except that, of course, knitting is way better for you than eating that much delicious junk food.

I am also enjoying the audio version of a book my dad recommended over the summer, The Happy Ever After Playlist by Abby Jiminez. Apparently it’s the second book in a connected series, the first of which apparently includes a lot of tears, so I’m glad I’ve started with this one.

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January 16, 2021

mlk day, pre-inaugural weekend plans
posted by soe 1:40 pm

Whoops! I logged on to pay a bill and discovered I hadn’t posted this last night:

This will be another weekend of self-care. I’d love to see some studies on the psychological effects of constant helicopter surveillance, but when I try to look it up, all I find is how overbearing parents affect their kids. Clearly not enough researchers live in urban areas during periods of unrest. My friend Sarah and I began the weekend by doing an Inaugural ice cream tasting at a local scoop shop this afternoon, so I’m hopeful that sets the tone for what that will look like:

  • Watching the latest Jumanji movie, the new episode of All Creatures Great and Small (Have you started watching yet? It’s quite good.), and something streamable (Maybe Bridgerton or The Prom). I watched a mediocre Christmas movie last night, and may continue the trend after Rudi goes to bed (ski coaches go to sleep very early during the season).
  • Enjoy our Christmas tree. It’s still going strong this year, and my goal is to keep it up through Wednesday, at the very least. (You do you. I’m seeing a lot of trees still in windows this year here in D.C.)
  • Spend time outside. It rained here tonight, just after I got home from the cross-town journey back from the ice cream parlor on my bike (thanks, weather gods). The forecast suggests most of the weekend will be dry and some might be sunny.
  • Bake. I know, I say this every weekend and then fail to do it. But I have a package that needs to go out next week and some cookies are part of it, so… Plus, I am picking up a new sourdough starter at the farmers market on Sunday, so that means I need to start planning for discard baking again. (The height-of-summer fridge death killed off my 2020 starter and I was too disheartened to get one going again this fall. But this week is one for new beginnings.)
  • Buy the makings for gardener’s pie (our vegetarian version of cottage/shepherd’s pie) at the farmers market. Rudi and I were talking about the need for comfort food this week, and that’s one of ours that we haven’t had yet this winter.
  • Order out. One of the things that Rudi and I talked about after I did an end-of-year reckoning of my bank account was that as long as we aren’t frivolous with our other spending, we can probably to support our local restaurants once a week. We’ve already lost several favorites and I’d like to help stem the tide.
  • Finish a knitting project. I have several lingering on the needles, and I’d love to move them from potential clothing to my wardrobe.
  • Wrap up my overdue reading. The library is closed until after the inauguration for the safety of their employees, so this can extend into the week. But I’d like to start the Biden administration without feeling guilty about books the library wants back. (Plus, if I return them before Wednesday, I can wave to Kamala and Doug, who currently live in the condos adjacent to the library (but who will move to the VP’s mansion at the Naval Observatory after being sworn in.)
  • MLK Day has begun to shift toward a day of service projects. A pandemic isn’t a great time to join a group event, but I can probably find a park that needs its litter picked up at a bare minimum.
  • Clear off the coffee table. My living room in general needs several days of work, but this feels like a manageable place to start.

How about you? What do you have planned for the long weekend?

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January 15, 2021

sorting out the usps, sneaky, and late-night chat
posted by soe 1:35 am

Three beautiful things from my past week:

1. Two missing Christmas cards from Connecticut reached me today, and my package with my parents’ gifts arrived there on Monday.

2. The third and final To All the Boys movie will be released on Netflix next month the weekend of my birthday — and I didn’t even know it had been filmed!

3. Karen and I get a chance to talk on the phone late Sunday night. It’s a lovely way to end the weekend.

How about you? What’s been beautiful in your world lately?

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January 14, 2021

early january unraveling
posted by soe 1:34 am

Early January Unraveling

I have a project that’s very nearly off the needles and a four-and-a-half-hour-long training tomorrow, so I’ve given some thought to what to knit next. This is Havirland Pax Socks in the Holiday Hangover colorway, which feels right for a January knit.

Since the training is a live video discussion about equity and inclusion, I’m not anticipating being able to spend the whole time knitting. But I wanted to have something to work on while I’m doing the listening part of the work, since I feel like the repetitive motion will help keep me focused on the conversation at hand, rather than wandering back to the pile of other work I have.

Rudi is spending one weeknight each week this winter coaching and tomorrow is that night. I’m anticipating having plenty of time to curl up with my current read, Evie Dunmore’s Bringing Down the Duke, a Victorian-era voting rights romance between a nobleman and a bluestocking. I’m about halfway through, and the duke has just asked the female protagonist to be his mistress. She skipped her first ever fireworks show for this conversation, and I think she’s going to rue the decision.

Head to As Kat Knits to see what others are knitting in this new year.

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January 13, 2021

midweek music: ‘moonlight sonata’
posted by soe 1:22 am

Here’s one of the things Annie Lennox has been working on during the pandemic: playing “Moonlight Sonata” perfectly:

She’s been way more productive with her pandemic time than I have.

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