sprite writes
broodings from the burrow

July 3, 2020


mid-year, animated, and relief
posted by soe 1:14 am

Coneflowers

Three beautiful things from my past week:

1. My semi-annual review was this week and my boss said really nice things about me.

2. One of the people in the neighborhood has a basset hound puppy. Watching its tail wagwagwag as it’s helped up onto the bench where its person is sitting so it can licklicklick his face is adorable.

3. We are a week into a heat wave, but it’s been a little less humid than usual, so there’s actual relief in the evenings. We’ve been trying to make sure we spend time at dusk in the park (along with many of our neighbors) and that we open the window after dark to let in some fresh air.

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

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July 2, 2020


first of july unraveling
posted by soe 1:38 am

First of July Unraveling

I really need to get to the park before dusk, because then I would actually be able to spend some time knitting on my heel flap. Once you get past the gusset decreases of a top-down sock, you’re practically home free, because even if, as with this sock, there will be patterning on the top of the foot, it’s stockinette on the bottom and therefore takes less time to knit.

I am eager to reach that point on these socks, but before I can decrease, I have to increase and I’m not quite there yet.

After enjoying the last Rick Riordan imprint I read, Tristan Strong Punches a Hole in the Sky by Kwame Mbalia, I decided pick up another, Carlos Hernandez’s Sal and Gabi Break the Universe. This was highly recommended by my friend Rebs, and she rarely steers me wrong. It’s about two younger teens who attend an arts school. One of the two is an aspiring magician, who, after his mom dies, discovers he can perform real magic, and the other is a would-be journalist and lawyer. I’m still in early days, so am eager to find out how the story evolves after the author finishes introducing the characters and setting the scene.

Head over to As Kat Knits for what others are reading and crafting.

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July 1, 2020


midweek music: ‘how we living’
posted by soe 1:08 am

Michael Franti & Spearhead perform some of the most joyful, soul-affirming music out there. Plus, it’s got a great beat, so you’ll find yourself on your feet dancing along before you know it.

“How We Living” is off their new album, Work Hard & Be Nice.

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June 30, 2020


top ten upcoming new releases
posted by soe 1:29 am

This week at That Artsy Reader Girl, we’re invited to share our Top Ten Most Anticipated Releases from the Second Half of 2020:

  1. Murder on Cold Street by Sherry Thomas (latest in my favorite series)
  2. Jasper Fforde’s The Constant Rabbit (another standalone from my favorite author)
  3. Troubled Blood, by Robert Galbraith (Yes, I know JKR has said some bigoted and truly hurtful things about trans people and I shouldn’t want to read any more in the Cormoran Strike series. But I do.)
  4. Faith by Julie Murphy (She writes the best job writing working class YA)
  5. Kind of a Big Deal by Meg Cabot Shannon Hale (The main character starts getting sucked into books — literally!)
  6. A Deadly Education by Naomi Novik (Highly imaginative fantasy from a great world builder)
  7. Matt Haig’s The Midnight Library (What if you could read the story of what happened if you’d made a different choice? What if there were a whole building filled with those stories?)
  8. Dear Justyce by Nic Stone (The follow-up to her Dear Martin)
  9. Brandy Colbert’s The Voting Booth
  10. Vanessa Yu’s Magical Paris Tea Shop by Roselle Lim

How about you? What books are you looking forward to coming out over the next six months?

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June 29, 2020


final weekending of june
posted by soe 1:06 am

Sunday Sunset

The weekend sped by, as it always does.

I took a basic barre class over Zoom, which made me realize it legitimately has been 35 years since I last did any ballet.

I went to the farmers market, where I swear I left some fruit for other people to buy. But I also came away with stone fruit and a ton of berries.

I made Rudi watch the start to The Matrix, “because I really liked that reboot they made with the girl.” Usually this is enough detail for Rudi to know what I’m talking about, but this time it wasn’t enough for him to know that I meant Men in Black International. (Even a day later, there was no way I could have told you Tessa Thompson, but if I’d said Thor was in it, Rudi might have caught on faster.) It took me half an hour to realize that at no point was Keanu Reeves going to switch sides and work with the suits, but half an hour was long enough for me to decide that way too many white guys had watched The Matrix and this is what has led to so many crackpot conspiracy theorists. I was never so glad to realize I was watching the wrong movie and that we could stop.

We worked on cleaning up the kitchen, since our fridge seems likely to die in the next couple weeks and we’d like our landlord to be able to send someone in to do something about that.

I did take the butter out of the freezer (thanks, Kare!), but failed to make it materialize into either baked goods or blueberry pancakes. We were successful at converting ingredients into strawberry daiquiris and Arnold Palmers (made with hibiscus raspberry currant tea).

I finished the book I was reading and started a new one.

And we enjoyed this most splendiferous sunset from the park.

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June 28, 2020


phascinating florals
posted by soe 1:11 am

Hydrangea

I find hydrangea the most fascinating example of chemistry. For one type of this flowering bush, what color flowers you end up with depends entirely on the pH levels of your soil. Acidic soil gets you blue flowers; basic soil gives you pink. However, if your soil is in a rather narrow band of neutral pH, you get flowers that are purple or have a tie-dye effect. Some people will go so far as to put metal into their hydrangea bed in the hopes that as the nail oxidizes, it will cause the soil to become more acidic.

Isn’t that cool?

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