unraveled wednesday|a snowy day…

IMG_7271

 

From my journal, 7:42 am: Snowfalls quietly, gently – all around: silence, punctuated by the normal, routine sounds: scratch of my pen gliding across my journal page; a jet plane taking off; an occasional clang of the radiator ~ all are exaggerated, louder, yet quietly so. “Shhh…I’m reading,” my coffee mug, tho’ empty, proclaims. The scent of candle wafts through the air, filling my nostrils and soul. In my left hand, I hold my tea mug – it’s warmth, too, soothes and comforts. My Valentine roses are exceptionally bright, still bringing joy, seven days later and counting…

Currently, 12:15 pm: Snow continues to fall; flakes are the kind that make you want to stick out your tongue and catch. When I was a child, I always imagined spending these kind of “snow days” at some out-of-the-way ski lodge, wrapped in a warm quilt, sitting in front of a roaring fire, reading a book too good to put down. Today is one of those days minus the ski lodge and roaring fire…and tho’ I’ve been reading, more of my energy has been spent looking, writing, thinking, reflecting…interrupted briefly to wash a load of  dish cloths/towels and chat with Norman over breakfast; and catch up with the news, stock market, the snowfall, etc.

He’s now situated in front of his computer and I, mine – tho’ we’re on separate floors. As I type these words, I hear the sound of ice against the window. Early this afternoon, the snow is to turn to mixed snow and sleet; I think, as predicted, it’s beginning to happen.

12:30 pm: Yep, I think the snow has ended…next up “icy rain! ”

Joining Kat and friends for their unraveled wednesday, too.

Cheers~

just in case…

IMG_7248

Kayla reached a milestone: her 18th birthday on Jan 29. Due to lousy weather, the planned gathering at a restaurant of her choice was postponed. Sunday afternoon, friends and family – including little Chris (Elias and Mama Dolly were sick) finally gathered for Italian food, thankful that earlier predictions for snow, ice, freezing rain, etc did not materialize. That was then…

Today, as I pen this post, we are gearing up for another round of  icy rain and possibly snow. I went to the grocery store to get basics: bananas; eggs; soup n’ salad mixin’; another bag of ice melt… and just in case we’re snowbound: cashews and wine,

If predictions indeed do materialize, we’re ready!

Cheers~

sometimes mondays| 2.18.19…

 

IMG_7260

… are very leisurely. Today,  Presidents’ Day,  has been filled with making lists, plans, menus and layouts (I am doing a layout a day, LOAD 219 that I’ve done every year the month of February for about 9 years) and a very extended MSQT (Morning Solitude and Quiet Time)! Just about 10 minutes ago,  I looked up at the clock and realized the day is well on its way to being over…

Today, it’s quiet and windy, sometimes sunny; other times, not! I think I will pause doing not much of anything and take a quick walk.  That should help me refocus my attention (and energy ) and get back to my lists, plans, menus and today’s layout/s – featuring a bit o’ green…hmmm, I just realized that yesterday was St Patrick’s Day.*

Trust you are enjoying a leisurely day, too!

Cheers~

*PS. 3:15 PM. Oops, as I walked I realized St. Patrick’s Day is in March.

unraveled wednesday | 2.13.2019…

     All 24 quilt blocks are done: stitched together in six columns of six blocks each and seams pressed.*  Next steps:

  • 1 -join the six columns;
  • 2- buy backing (I looked  through my stash and didn’t find anything I really liked so I’ll stop at the quilt shop tomorrow after I meet with my Thurs stitching friends);
  • 3 – give to the long arm quilter to stitch her magic joining the three layers – top, batting and backing – together… and then
  • 4 – Voila, one quilt ready for the May quilt show and, and…
  • 5 – finish the two quilts on my design wall, also slated for the quilt show.

I’m about half through Digital Minimalism and discovered the other day I missed the author’s book signing last Sat, here in DC. He actually lives in Takoma Park, MD, a suburb of DC. Oh well… On my TBR list: 3 memoirs: Educated by Tara Westover; Inheritance by Dani Shapiro; and Anne Patchett’s Truth & Beauty.

As for knitting, I continue to stitch a row or several most days on the Christmas stocking and Log Cabin/ 9- patch lap robe. Waiting patiently in the wings is a project I promised myself I would not start until (if ever?) those two were nearly completed… I am seeing the end! I also have a couple other KNiPs ( knit projects in progress – or not) that need some attention; determined to do so in 2019!

Time to resume my stint at the sewing machine and even go for a walk – sun’s in/out today and the temps are in the high 40s! Joining Kat and friends for Unraveled Wednesday!

Cheers~

*(the photo on the left is cloudy because the iron was steaming…)

sometimes mondays | 2.11.2019 …

IMG_7150

(I went to IKEA yesterday and treated myself to a frozen yogurt…yes, it was cold out!)

…are messy! It appears that winter has returned, despite Phil’s declaration, throwing a monkey wrench in everyone’s plans. I’m sure the school kids are delighted – especially if they have snow. We just had a dusting followed by rain and now: frozen snow! I am not complaining for my drive north was cancelled. As I see it, time returned to my schedule and an opportunity for me to finish – or at least get close –  the quilt I’m making… there, on the ironing board:  24 stitched blocks.

IMG_7151

Once I’ve pressed the set on the right, I will join all 24 …and voila: a quilt top. I think first, tho’, I’ll straighten the chaos in my sewing studio – there’s only so much disorganization that 72 sq foot room can accommodate*.

Time to get on with this day. What’s on your agenda? Whatever, enjoy!

Cheers~

*Note to Self: I probably need to consult with IKEA’s design team; they have a knack for maximizing small spaces.

lost…

IMG_7110

(today’s sunset at 5:43 pm, EST)

This is a long tale…of woe, I ‘spect.

My mother was in a Tom Thumb wedding when she was  five years old; as part of the event, she was given a gold band. As she grew older, she wore the band on her pinkie finger and when she married, it stayed there, next to her thin gold wedding band. As a child, I coveted that Tom Thumb ring…I don’t think she could’ve removed it, had she been so inclined.

Fast forward to early 80s; I found a pinky gold band that was shaped much like a lower case h  – with a small diamond in the upper portion of the letter. Of course I bought the ring and wore it too on my left pinky finger. I eventually had the diamond removed for it often got snagged.  I had the ring for nearly forty years – wearing it mostly when I was out: working; socializing; etc.

Yesterday,  I joined  friends for our Thursday stitching gathering and on the way home made a couple stops, one at a small shopping plaza. As I was walking the halls to get to my car, I looked down at my left hand and realized I didn’t have on my ring! I retraced my steps: I’d gone to Joann’s and the grocery store for bananas, apples and a container of Panera’s broccoli cheese soup (sooo good!). A look and inquiry in both places turned up not-a-thing! I drove home, thinking, hoping that perhaps I’d not put on the ring. Alas, that was not the case. The ring was not in my jewelry box.

I searched my purse and the basket of knitting I’d taken. I searched the pockets of the jeans and shirt I wore; my coat pockets. I even searched the plastic bags that held my purchases. I  searched through every thing, many times over. To no avail! My friend- in whose home we gathered – even searched her couch, moving the pillows and looking underneath. Zilch. Da nada.

I have not thoroughly searched my car; just don’t have the emotional energy. Perhaps over the weekend –  if the weather cooperates and that’s dubious… because winter may return…

I am slowly coming to terms with my lost ring. I know that I can always get a replacement of some sort, if I so choose. I am grateful that the ring was not my mother’s from the Tom Thumb wedding. Had that been the case, I imagine I’d be a bit  inconsolable today.

As the sun sets – and it was pretty dramatic this day – I am feeling a tad better; it helps for me to voice, acknowledge my feelings. Know that I appreciate beyond words your support. I have learned over my years of living that life does go on and I am grateful for each day I’ve had; even the one where I’ve lost my ring.

Have a wonderful, preferably non-weather-event- weekend!

Cheers~

 

 

unraveled wednesday | 2.6.19 …

 

IMG_7080

~oops, she made a mistook! ~ 

     This stitcher’s most coveted tool is her seam ripper… and she’s had plenty of practice using it over the past couple days. Stitching the blocks of a special quilt  she’s making. For some weird reason, she’s also being challenged in arranging the blocks in the proper order…discovered, of course, after a few have been stitched together! Nevertheless, she perseveres and progress is being made, albeit s-l-o-w-l-y. If all goes according to her intent, she will have completed sewing 12 (5 blocks to stitch) of the 24 blocks together TODAY!  Sew Honoré Sew!

IMG_7082

~often on her walks, she runs across a ‘free library’ ~

     This reader’s TBR queue is growing, almost daily. So many choices, so little time. Tho’ desired, one cannot do everything in any one single day, she reminds herself. One has to be a bit more discerning … She’s been thinking a lot about where she wants her reading to go and how to tackle the TBR queue. She’s not set a number of books to read in any given time period. When she was a child, the idea of reading a book perched in a tree or sitting by a fire at a ski lodge or on the beach  was very appealing. Alas, none of those desirable options are available today, either. She’s currently reading books relative to her 2019 word – habit – and zeroing in on memoir and an occasional fiction title – primarily as an audio book/walking companion. She received Cal Newport’s Digital Minimalism yesterday, started it this morning …and had to force herself to close it…or nothing might’ve gotten done today, including the blog and the quilt blocks! Yep, she thinks it’s going to be that good!

So, it’s time for her to return to the sewing machine and quilt blocks…or perhaps, take a quick read with lunch. Heads or Tails???

Joining Kat and friends for today’s Unraveled Wednesday .

Cheers~

mandalas and spring …

IMG_7060

~quilted mandalas~

     My quilt group meets weekly on Monday. At the end of each meeting, we have show-n-tell, an informal sharing by members of their recent quilting projects . This is a photo of quilted mandalas; I have a secret love affair with mandalas. Occasionally, I color one or try to create my own design. When I saw these, I knew I wanted to add making one or more to my someday maybe quilt project list. I chatted with the maker of these and asked her to send me a reference to the magazine and  instructions, if she still had them. She did and left me a message last night. Hmm, I thought, I think I might have that issue… and by golly, I do! I think I bought it before Christmas, skimmed the issue and marked the article to read/try later How about that for a bit of serendipity?

IMG_7077

~this tree~

This morning I was convinced that I saw just the faintest signs of green on this tree, often featured on my blog as I use it to track seasons. We’re having most welcomed spring temps. Yesterday, 60s and today, 70s. Maybe Phil was right – Spring will be early! Only time will tell…

IMG_7086

~#blueskybuds~

Today, I took a long walk – the first in days. I was on the lookout for forsythia; too soon…but I did see #blueskybuds ! And that made my heart sing!

What signs of spring have you seen?

Cheers~

collecting january 2019 …

IMG_7022

January has been a full month, filled with:

  • time with good friends;
  • moments spent with the little boys;
  • several stitching gatherings;
  • good food; and
  • winter/wintry weather –  which also meant fewer treks outdoors.

I read, stitched, knitted and also took a few photos of the sky and winter trees – have I ever shared that I like “naked ‘ trees the best? So much of their character is revealed with the sky as background. We watched a couple Super Bowl football playoffs and plan to watch the game with pizza and champagne. Years past, tho’ not recently, Norman’s had Super Bowl parties.

On the 12th, I stumbled upon The Cleveland Symphony Orchestra’s performance on PBS! The pianist, Lang Lang, played my favorite Mozart piece: Piano Concerto No. 24. The entire performance was superb, especially the camera work. Watch here .

The quilt shown on the 28th was part of my quilting group’s weekly show and tell; I especially liked these two blocks of  one, and in particular, the flying goose surrounded by flying geese quilt pieces…

Sunday the 27th and Thursday the 31st, I joined stitching friends. I thought I’d make a Waterlogue collage; the top row of photos, L to R, show knitting, and needlepoint. The bottom row features needlepoint, hand applique´and machine quilting on a wall hanging.

IMG_7023

This is the quilt (lower right photo)  – made by friend Diane- without the waterlogue. The quilt consists of gorgeous Asian fabrics, quilted with shiny gold threads. All very lovely.

IMG_7013

And that’s a wrap for January! We’ve had snow all day, since about 6 am this morning; it rather looks like it might be ending. Tomorrow’s to be sunny and 44° Guess ol’ Phil will see his shadow…We all know what that means!

Enjoy your weekend!

Cheers~