sprite writes
broodings from the burrow

August 5, 2021


it’s not the same; i moved it two inches to the right
posted by soe 1:46 am

Not Identical to Last Week's Shot

Contrary to what you might understandably think, this is not an identical shot to last week’s post. I have made progress on both the shawl and the book, but it’s slow-going. The shawl more so than the book at this point, in part because it requires more thought. I’ll likely be done with the book by this weekend, but the shawl will drag on. The problem is that it just doesn’t match where my head is right now. I can’t even tell you why it’s hard; really it’s just one row out of four where I need to pay attention, and then every sixth row, there’s also a make-one increase tucked in at the end just to make sure I’m not getting too comfortable.

But I do have a pair of socks that have just needed a toe for months now, so maybe I’ll take a time-out on the shawl, finish the socks, and give myself some kind of Ravellenic Games win. It feels like that might be the kindest thing I can do in the next couple days.

I finished listening to Becoming Duchess Goldblatt while walking home from Safeway tonight. I hadn’t brought headphones, so everyone along the route got a snippet of the final three chapters. The Duchess would likely approve. I have Did You Hear What Happened to Lacey? queued up, but I also checked out a couple mysteries this evening as well. One of them is a collection of Poirot stories read by Christopher Lee and the actor who played Colonel Hastings on the David Suchet series.

Head to As Kat Knits to see what others are crafting and reading this week.

Category: books,knitting. There is/are 1 Comment.

August 3, 2021


top ten titles that make me want to read a book
posted by soe 1:40 am

This week’s Top Ten Tuesday topic from That Artsy Reader Girl invites us to share ten books that we were inspired to read simply because of their title or cover. Here are ten of the books I thought had clever titles:

  1. Doughnuts and Other Proclamations of Love, by Jared Reck
  2. How the Penguins Saved Veronica, by Hazel Prior
  3. Pride and Premeditation, by Tirzah Price
  4. Incense and Sensibility, by Sonali Dev
  5. The Raconteur’s Commonplace Book, by Kate Milford
  6. The Nobleman’s Guide to Scandal and Shipwrecks, by Mackenzi Lee
  7. Rosie’s Travelling Tea Shop, by Rebecca Raisin
  8. A Cuban Girl’s Guide to Tea and Tomorrow, by Laura Taylor Namey
  9. The Wax Pack: On the Open Road in Search of Baseball’s Afterlife, by Brad Balukjian
  10. The List of Things That Will Not Change, by Rebecca Stead

How about you? What books have you read/do you plan to read because their titles caught your fancy?

Category: books. There is/are 1 Comment.

July 29, 2021


final july unraveling
posted by soe 1:58 am

Final June Unraveling

There was some actual unraveling a few seconds ago, as I went to take a picture of my knitting and realized I’d dozed off before finishing the row. I wasn’t at the end of the row, as I’d expected, but a couple dozen stitches before it, and I lost a handful of stitches in my handling of it. But I got it all righted, so phew!

I also lost the equivalent of a few stitches in listening to the audiobook of Becoming Duchess Goldblatt. I’ll wait until tomorrow to pick up those threads and figure out where I’d stopped being awake in the telling of the tale.

I’ve started Incense and Sensibility by Sonali Dev in paper. Her Austen-inspired series always start a little slow, but getting to follow the breadcrumbs she lays down (India and China’s last name is Dashwood, for instance) is always enjoyable, although I did eventually have to give in and look up what Marianne and Elinor’s youngest sister’s name is in the original, since it was distracting me from the book (Margaret, in case it’s now bugging you, too).

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

Category: books,knitting. There is/are 1 Comment.

July 28, 2021


midweek music: ‘joanna’
posted by soe 1:42 am

I’ve had “Joanna” by Kool & the Gang running around my head for all day. So now I’m sharing the earworm with you.

Category: arts. There is/are 1 Comment.

July 27, 2021


top ten desert isle reads
posted by soe 2:13 am

Today’s Top Ten Tuesday topic from That Artsy Reader Girl asks, if stranded on a deserted island, what would be the ten books you’d like to have with you:

  1. One of those all in one OEDs with the magnifying glasses so you can read the tiny print. How irritating would it be to not be able to think of the word you’re looking for and to only have your own decaying brain to rely on? (Bonus, the magnifying glass can be used to help with starting a fire. Minus, I don’t know how to do that and would not want to waste one of my ten slots on a book that tells me.)
  2. That said, there is a single-volume encyclopedia that dates from earlier this century, the Britannica Concise Encyclopedia. Sure, it’s already outdated. However, I’m stranded, and there’s benefit to a 2000-page book on 28,000 topics. (Side note: did you know there is still a print encyclopedia being made? Clearly I couldn’t take a 22-volume set on a doomed cruise or flight, but it’s something to keep in mind for more mundane needs.)
  3. I took The Sagas of the Icelanders (all 848 pages of it) with me to Reykjavik, and didn’t get very far. I’m assuming I’ll be stranded for more than a week, though, so having a lengthy tome would be helpful.
  4. Sticking with the big books theme, let’s go with a Complete Works of Shakespeare. Dad has one that he once kindly offered to lend me when I was reading … maybe Pericles? … but since I was mostly reading it on the Metro, that seemed impractical. Endless days on the beach or in a makeshift hammock, though? Sure! (And Pericles would be a great play to return to for this scenario.)
  5. Poetry would be a good choice for a deserted island. Lots of time to dissect word choice and layered meanings. I’m thinking Good Poems for Hard Times, edited by Garrison Keillor, might be an apt choice. I’d be open to a different poetry collection, but I’d want to stick with one with multiple authors.
  6. I have a collected works of Charlotte and Emily Brontë (I don’t know why they slighted Anne) that I bought on vacation in middle school at an Annie’s Book Stop on Cape Cod. (I am too lazy to walk over to the bookshelf by the bathroom and find the actual title.) This would be a good selection, because I could finally get around to reading Charlotte’s other works, and if I needed to burn pages to start a fire, I could start with the St. John chapters of Jane Eyre and any part of Wuthering Heights that still pisses me off. (I loved it as a melodramatic teen, can’t remember my thoughts from college, and hated it in grad school. Who knows what re-reading it in my 40s will bring?)
  7. Again, sticking with a theme, I’m thinking for my last item (I already wrote the next group), I’d go with The Eyre Affair by Jasper Fforde. I imagine the longer I’m stuck on the island, the more I’ll be grateful for this choice. (Although including it does bump Austen off my list.)
  8. -10. The last three are sentimental favorites — books that went with me to college and that came down with me to D.C. when we pretty much just moved cats, sleeping bags, microwave, and a single box of Very Important Books (because I couldn’t see how I’d get through the move without them): Little Women, Anne of Green Gables, and Harry Potter and the Sorceror’s Stone.

How about you? What sort of books would you want to have with you if you were stuck on a desert isle?

Category: books. There is/are 4 Comments.

July 24, 2021


feast fit for an emperor
posted by soe 1:26 am

I decided at some past Olympics that it seemed only fitting to celebrate Opening and Closing Ceremonies with a nod to the host nation.

With this year’s Olympics being held in Tokyo, that means Japanese, and D.C. did not leave me hanging. About eight blocks away from the Burrow is Hana Market, a tiny Japanese grocery (and one-time tourism agency). After work let out, I wandered over to pick up snacks to eat during tonight’s broadcast. While I have been to Hana before, it’s either been to pick up a specific ingredient or to buy a mochi to snack on. This time I took a less strategic approach and just picked up things that looked interesting.

I came home with a bag of supplies, including:

Japanese Snacks

Peach caramel corn pops, seasoned seaweed, coffee-flavored black sesame candy (I missed the fact that they were coffee), matcha Kit Kats, chocolate stumps, roasted bean snacks, and chestnut mochi served as appetizers.

Tasty Mango Cream Soda

Mango creamy soda, which contains 0% juice, but does contain milk. I’d buy it again.

We paused in our corner-store delights to have some actual dinner, picked up from the nearby Japanese restaurant, Sakana, that we’d never been to. Rudi ordered a roll and a sushi bento. While I considered an entree, I’ve rarely been to a Japanese restaurant that offered an entire section of vegetarian sushi/maki, and that won out in the end:

Veggie Sushi

The roll at the top is tempura vegetables. The one on the right is ume shiso, or pickled plum. The one at the bottom left is kanpyo, or dried gourd. All three were delicious.

And then for dessert, Rudi and I split these two red bean paste mochis, a favorite of mine.

Red Bean Paste Mochis for Dessert

That’s a pretty good feast, wouldn’t you say?

Category: arts,dc life,sports. There is/are 1 Comment.