sprite writes
broodings from the burrow

May 5, 2017

beach, bulbs, and baseball
posted by soe 1:10 am

Three beautiful things from my past week:


1. On Monday, I took the day off from work, and Rudi and I drove to Delaware for the day to go to Bethany Beach. There was a steady 20 mph breeze, which meant that a fine shower of sand literally rained down upon us for several hours, covering our blanket — and us — with a layer of granules. Otherwise, we had a lovely day. We waded in the water, soaked up some sun (clear skies and low 80s), and ate fish sandwiches and Dairy Queen Blizzards (our favorite ice cream shop just off the boardwalk is still only open on the weekend at this point in the season) and doughnuts from a new-to-us chain. We stopped at a farm stand for strawberries and pickles. And we were home in time for our favorite tv show.

2. The purple irises at the park by our house have bloomed, filling the hillside verge with deep violets and greens.

3. We finally got to our first baseball game of the season on Friday when the Mets came to town. It was a pleasant evening for a game under the lights and, despite a shaky showing by the bullpen, the Mets pulled off a win. (We also went today for a day game with Sarah and one of her friends, in which the Nationals held off the Arizona Diamondbacks.)

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

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May 4, 2017

unraveled in early may
posted by soe 1:38 am

Unraveled in Early May

What you see there is the Points of Light baby blanket I began making nearly a decade ago. Clearly the 8-year old no longer needs a baby blanket and a new baby is entering our greater collected family this year, so I’ve pulled it out of storage. I have the intention of putting it back on needles and getting moving on it in the hopes that it’s done before he is. (Obviously that did not work so well the last time.) The pattern has been rewritten since I last worked on it (thank you, Ravelry, for housing updates for me) and now has a chart, so I’m hoping that will make things faster/easier.

I finished The Girl from Everywhere tonight, so am about to begin The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas. I continue to read and enjoy Word by Word, but I’ve found it’s the sort of book I don’t want to power-read through; I want to consider her points and digest the information. In my ears, I’ve been listening to Lillian Boxfish Takes a Walk by Kathleen Rooney. Obviously I’m only part of the way through, but it has the feel of a book that Bridget or Nan would enjoy. (I actually assumed I’d found it through their recommendation, but instead it was through Largehearted Boy.) It’s about an 85-year-old woman who goes out for a walk on New Year’s Eve 1984 in New York City, where she reminisces about her life as an ad woman, poet, and flâneuse.

Unraveling with Kat.

Category: books,knitting. There is/are 2 Comments.

April 28, 2017

recharge, a tiny bouquet, and still open
posted by soe 12:57 am

Three beautiful things from my past week:

1. I take a long weekend and head to Connecticut for the first time since Christmas. I eat pizza, make scones, catch up on sleep, and visit with my folks and a couple friends. Completely worth the 20 hours of solo driving.

2. Rudi returns from a trip to the compost pile at our garden with the final half dozen violets of the spring and reports of flowering strawberry plants in our plot.

3. Although we’re terrible at remembering to go to art shows before they close, we make it to the Toulouse-Lautrec exhibition at our neighborhood museum days before it goes. Somehow I didn’t take a photo of the ice skater, which was my favorite of his works, but I did capture the draft and final work for an ad for a brand of bike chain:

Rudi and Toulouse-Lautrec's Bicycle Works

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

Category: three beautiful things. There is/are 3 Comments.

April 27, 2017

Late April Unraveling
posted by soe 1:15 am

I’m still working on the books I showed you in my last update, although I listened to a whole audiobook on this weekend’s road trip and started a new one, Zac and Mia, in an effort to finish one more of last year’s AudiobookSYNC books before this summer’s downloads begin today. Tonight I’ve read some more of Word by Word and The Girl from Everywhere. The former is due back soon to the library (where holds prevent me from renewing it) and the latter is the furthest along I am in any of the current selection of books, making it the best contender for returning to the library this weekend. The Hate U Give will also be due back to the library soon, with a long list of people waiting for it, so I’ll need to get moving on that one this weekend.

Jeremiah & Tonight's Reading

On the knitting front, I’m down to the ribbing before the bind off on my cowl and I’m looking forward to completing that imminently. A friend is coming to town for her baby shower at the end of May and I’d like to have some knit things to hand off to her. One will be a hat that she started many years ago and then left with me when she moved away. Her notes don’t match the pattern she gave me, so I’ll need to figure out what was going on in order to preserve her start — it seems like a nice thing to give the baby his mother’s knitting, right? And from me I’m hoping to resurrect/restart a blanket I began for a baby who’s now finishing kindergarten. (So many of my infant projects go that way. I have sleeves for a baby sweater for a different kindergartener…)

However, I do have some finished knitting to show off:

Dad in His Hat

This is the Violet Waffles Hat I owed Dad from Christmas this year. I bought skeins of yarn at A Great Yarn in Chatham, Mass., last summer on our family vacation with the intention of making gifts for Mum and Dad to commemorate our family trip. This is HauteknitYarn’s Superwash Merino in worsted weight in Chatham Yarn’s The Finest Hours colorway (the name references a book (and later film) about the 1952 rescue of the capsized SS Pendleton by the town’s Coast Guard). The yarn has a very nice hand. It’s very soft and squishy and played nicely with both wooden and metal needles. (Should Dad he decides he hates it, I’m totally taking it back and wearing it myself after adding a pom pom to it.)

I made a longer ribbing section so the bottom could be folded up for more warmth in the winter. I went up a needle size from what was recommended on the body of the hat because I had size 7s available and they seemed to work.

Dad's Hat

I finished the hat in the wee smalls before driving north and, thus, forgot to take a photo of it. I also nearly forgot to take one of Dad wearing it, so Mum literally popped it on his head as I was making lunch just before heading back home. Dad’s bemused look shows just how much he loves his daughter and her quirky need to document her knitting.

You can find more books and knitting at AsKatKnits’ Unraveled Wednesday.

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April 25, 2017

spring ninja book swap: still a mystery
posted by soe 1:55 am

I was fortunate enough to be able to participate in Bex‘s Ninja Book Swap once again this spring and got a great package at the start of April.

The box was bulging and after I pulled off the tape, a fun pillow sprang into my arms. This is what I found beneath it:

Ninja Book Swap Presents!

My swap partner sent me a ton of stuff, each carefully and decoratively wrapped. The cats really enjoyed getting to take part in the unwrapping as little balls of tissue paper were batted all over the apartment.

Eventually, though, nearly all was revealed:

Spring Ninja Book Swap Goodies

In addition to the pillow, there were two books off my to-be-read list, Radio Girls and The Brontës Go to Woolworths, both of which are historical fiction I’m really looking forward to! There were notepads galore, several of which have already been put to good use and have been tucked into my various bags, colorful pens, literary buttons, and chocolate.

And there were three new nail polishes, because in the Twitter chat, someone had remarked you should remember your partner’s list when you go shopping or else you’ll only recall they like nail polish and then you’ll have to send them a package with just that. And I replied that that sounded like a very fun package!

Easter Nail Polish

The stickers were mine, but as you can see, they work really well with the other three! (Yes, it’s starting to chip, but it’s 10 days out from when I painted them, so, actually, it lasted a really long time undinged!)

This package was great, but one mystery remains: the identity of my swap partner! Usually a card or something contains a little note, but all I have are the return address details from the box. I had held off posting this, hoping my query on Twitter would reach my partner and she would reveal herself, but so far no further information has been forthcoming. I didn’t want to wait any longer in case she wasn’t on Twitter and was worried I either hadn’t received the box or wasn’t over the moon about its contents. Therefore, I’m hoping Em from California is reading today and can see how grateful I am for all the goodies she sent!

Category: books. There is/are 3 Comments.

April 21, 2017

spring, scent, and saturday downtime
posted by soe 1:11 am

Three beautiful things from this past week:

1. Last Thursday’s farmers market had asparagus and today’s had the first strawberries of the season. I shared some with my coworkers, and then Rudi and I followed a risotto supper with bowls of berries and cream.

Strawberries and Cream

2. Wisteria is blooming along the canal and honeysuckle doesn’t seem far behind. The air is tinged with their odor.

3. I sit on a bench at the waterfront and snack on Turkish bread products, sip hot tea, and read as the sun inches its way toward the horizon.

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

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