sprite writes
broodings from the burrow

April 20, 2022

volleying outdoors
posted by soe 6:14 am

As some of you know, I play recreation volleyball with a team. Some of us are newer to each other, while others of us have been playing together for several years. But we travel as a unit, picking up new players as need be to keep the season going.

We’ve been playing indoors and masked since September, so it was very exciting when we saw outdoor volleyball was an option once more. For the first time, we’re playing on the Mall, a few steps from the MLK Memorial near the Tidal Basin. Most of D.C.’s sand courts have been offline since the start of the pandemic — first because it was thought outdoor sports might be an illness vector and later because the National Park Service wanted to do some upkeep. (It just would have been so much handier if those had been concurrent decisions, rather than consecutive ones.) So we’re playing on grass for now, which I actually prefer. (I grow too much glass in my garden to feel excited about romping barefoot in D.C.’s parks.)

Today was our first match, which also coincided with the return of early March weather — biting cold and strong winds — that kept all of us in sweatshirts and guessing about the direction of hits and serves.

But in the end, none of that mattered — we were playing volleyball and playing it together!

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April 19, 2022

top ten bookish items i’d love to own
posted by soe 1:10 am

This week’s Top Ten Tuesday topic from That Artsy Ready Girl asks us to share ten bookish items we’d love to own. I thought I’d share ten bookish knitting patterns I’d love to make:

  1. Wonderland Socks
  2. Hundred Acre Woods socks
  3. Alice in Wonderland mittens
  4. Snow Queen socks
  5. Christmas with the Marches shawl
  6. Rivendell socks
  7. Brighton mitts
  8. Nancy Drew sweater
  9. Anne’s Sweater
  10. Anne Elliot’s Fichu shawl

For my crafty friends, are there literary-inspired items you’d like to make?

Category: books. There is/are 3 Comments.

April 15, 2022

lenses, it’s outta here, and supper out
posted by soe 1:34 am

Three beautiful things from my past week:

1. My new glasses, complete with their progressive lenses, arrived. The woman who’d sold them to me warned they weren’t for everyone and that there could be a learning curve. I was pleasantly surprised to find that I mostly got the hang of them pretty quickly, although there are certain head angles that invoke fun house mirror moments, so I can see how someone might be put off by that.

2. A grand slam is pretty special in any baseball game, but even more so when it comes from your team’s clutch hitter in the first game of the season you attend in person.

3. A late afternoon rainstorm caused some cancellations for the volleyball practice I’d scheduled for tonight. Eventually, there were only three of us standing and we opted to go out to supper instead. It was nice to talk and laugh, and my friend, Neal, and I chatted until quite late.

What’s been beautiful in your world lately?

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April 14, 2022

mid-april unraveling
posted by soe 1:01 am

Mid-April Unraveling

I’m pleased with how my socks are looking and anticipate wrapping them up this weekend. I’m already anticipating returning to my mom’s languishing Christmas shawl, as well as a couple projects that’ve been sitting for several years. Plus, there will be a new pair of socks to cast on for. Exciting!

I went across the river to return a book to the Arlington library and came back with four that I randomly pulled from the stacks. (Ahhh… unfettered browsing…) The one I decided to start with was Leonard Goldberg’s The Daughter of Sherlock Holmes, which features the adult offspring of all the major players of Arthur Conan Doyle’s detective series, as well as Dr. John Watson, now an elderly man. I’m delighted to report that I’m enjoying it thoroughly and that there are several more books in the series.

In the ears, I’m continuing to listen to Cassandra Petersen’s Cruelly Yours, Elvira, which is a lot of fun to listen to. She is a colorful storyteller and and an enthusiastic reader, which is all you can ask for in a memoir read by its author.

I don’t know what I’ll be reading next, but I’m looking forward to figuring out the paper answer sometime tomorrow.

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

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

April 13, 2022

posted by soe 1:20 am

I’m pretty sure this is the earliest I’ve ever filed my federal taxes. (I have yet to file the local ones, so there’s still time for things to go sideways, but I’ll do that as soon as I track down a pen with black ink.)

Honestly, I like paying taxes. I believe in many of the things that taxes pay for, like schools and libraries and roads and arts programs and the post office and supporting those who aren’t able to care for themselves or who have served our country. I mean, sure there are things the federal government does with our money that I don’t like, but I choose to believe that most of the money I pay goes toward the good things.

That said, though, I try to balance my withholdings so that we’re at roughly sum zero after I’ve filed. My grandmother used to say that if you’re getting a big return, it just means you gave the government an interest-free loan of your money. While I have no problem giving the government what they feel is fair for me to pay, I do object to giving them money they aren’t entitled to. So, I aim for my paying a couple dozen dollars or them giving me back the same amount each year, and mostly I’ve been pretty successful.

Now I’ll just keep my fingers crossed I did the same with my local taxes.

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April 12, 2022

top ten authors i haven’t read but want to
posted by soe 1:32 am

This week’s Top Ten Tuesday from That Artsy Reader Girl invites us to share ten authors whose works we’d like to read, but that we haven’t yet gotten to. Here are mine:

  1. Zadie Smith
  2. Anne Bronte
  3. E.M. Forster
  4. Arundhati Roy
  5. Simon Winchester
  6. Kate Atkinson
  7. Adam Silvera
  8. Sabaa Tahir
  9. N.K. Jemison
  10. Octavia Butler

Who are some of the authors you’ve been meaning to read for a while now?

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