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Thursday, March 30, 2017

Thursdays with Sam | Food!

New thing today - Sam has started food!

This morning, Katie told me I had the very fun responsibility of introducing carrots. They're one of my favorite foods, so I was hoping it would go well. and I must say - the first serving was ... maybe not so great. But after bananas at mid-day, he seemed a lot happier with the carrots this afternoon.

She also told me "food is fun" at this stage. Indeed! It's certainly a touch and taste experience. I also told her I maybe should've just fed him in the bathtub.

p.s. our neighbor passed away yesterday. I know his wife and family are feeling all the love and prayers from y'all - thank you!
Renie's shawl ... slow progress

p.p.s. we are watching the news about the terrible highway collapse in Atlanta. Katie normally travels that route every afternoon, but today - she had a business dinner downtown. She's fine (and taking a different route home tonight) ... and while she's worried about what her commute will be for the next two weeks, she's glad it's just two weeks. Her new commute won't be anywhere close to that intersection. It seems a miracle - but so far, no one's been hurt. and I've got plenty of time to find a different route to visit her.

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Wednesday, March 29, 2017

More and Less | March 2017.

Instead of sharing little updates about all of my intentions, this month I'm going to dive deep into just one. In last month's recap, I mentioned a "new practice" around mindfulness.

With a huge debt of gratitude to Kat (first her beautiful inspiration and then a chain of emails full of great advice!), I started daily stitching in February.

My "plan" when I started last month (and wow, was February 1 really only 57 days ago?!) was a monthly journal. I cut a piece of linen, acquired a dozen or so balls of size 8 perle cotton and dove in.
February 6

It took less than a week ... and I stalled out. I saw the first daffodil blooms, but had no yellow thread. and I stressed about the stitches (I did some crewel embroidery as a teenager, but that was eons ago!) to use. It wasn't very mindful!

I'd just started reading Marianne Williamson's A Year in Miracles; I decided to focus on a few lines from each devotion and simple running stitches. It worked. I enjoyed the creativity of choosing a thread and deciding where to place the stitches. But after that, my mind was free to meditate on the words.
February 28

For March, I simplified my approach even more. I limited the number of colors and planned to use only straight stitches, horizontal and vertical lines. The simpler approach and rhythm of the stitching was exactly what my mind needed...
March 4
... until I started struggling with the devotions. And the simplest solution of all presented itself. I'm using this stitching time for prayer.

Of all the daily habits I've attempted, this one has been the easiest. I look forward to the time and whereas I couldn't always "find" 15 minutes for yoga, I've had no trouble finding it to stitch! I like, too, that I'm making something with those minutes (and it's not knitting). I haven't decided what I'll do - if anything? - with the finished pieces. I'm thinking I might stretch them over a canvas board (the pieces are about 7"x9" so would fit nicely over an 8x10). or maybe I'll wait until the end of the year and do something with them all together. Welcome your ideas!
March 29

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Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Tuesdays with Charlie | Iggy Peck.

When Charlie pulled out the blocks last week, he said "let's play Iggy Peck". Ok! Last week's play mostly consisted of putting the blocks back into the box (I'll never complain about putting toys away, but really, it wasn't all

But this week, I was treated to a "tall tower" that took at least 15 minutes to build :-) It was cool, too, that Charlie built it on the floor, so there was never any worry it might topple over.
I texted Katie one of those nearly-done photos and she replied "Type A? He loves to line things up and organize!" I'm thinking two-year old boys could do a lot worse!

Also, I'm always really happy that Charlie enjoys putting away the blocks just as much as loves dumping them out and playing with them.

And of course, if you play Iggy Peck, you want to read the book. But Iggy Peck is not on our shelves. We looked at the library (on-line) and couldn't find a copy there either.  But it's on the shelf in Charlie's room at home. We got there a few minutes early this afternoon and had time to read the book...
and be silly!

I love that Charlie is playing the character in a book. I have no idea what kind of book play I might've been doing at age 2, but I remember playing Laura (not Mary :-) from Little House on the Prairie in 4th grade.

I'd love to hear - what characters have you played? or did your kids play?

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Monday, March 27, 2017

Slow Me Down.

My neighbor Tom was moved to inpatient hospice care Friday evening.  Our little neighborhood is in a waiting place.
Sunday afternoon in our neighborhood
When I find myself failing to notice the beauty of a moonlit night, the abundance of harvests fruits and vegetables, the perfection of clouds agains a blue sky, slow me down and give me gratitude and reverence for all your gifts. 
~ from my Lenten devotion, p. 57

I started a shawl for my friend Renie (Tom's wife). Knitting Kidsilk Haze on size 5 needles ... is certainly slowing me down. I didn't realize quite how perfect the project was until I read those words this morning.

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Thursday, March 23, 2017

Thursdays with Sam | A Different View.

Today's Think Write Thursday topic is to look out a window you don't normally look out of and tell us what you see. I kind of cheated. I did do the "don't normally look out" part - but I knew what I'd see.

I snapped this photo from Charlie's bedroom window just after I put Sam down for his last nap of the day*

That sign is in their front yard; and yep, they're moving. Three weeks from today.

They're moving 25 miles away. back into town. 25 miles closer to Katie's work**. They'll also be a lot closer to fun things to do like the Botanical Gardens, the Children's Museum, the Aquarium, the Center for Puppetry Arts and I'm sure we'll find more.

I know 25 miles isn't another state, but - especially on Atlanta highways - it's a big deal. After the move, I (we!) won't be spending Tuesdays here with Charlie or Thursdays here with Sam. I do plan to see both boys (and their parents) on a regular basis ... but we're going to let things settle a bit before we figure out a new routine.

And you know it will be a very little bit because I don't think I can go more than a week without seeing this in real life.

*not to confuse y'all - I pick Sam up in the morning and we spend the day at my house ... until just after his 3pm bottle. Then we head back to his house, so he can have a good nap in his own bed (instead of a carseat), before the family gets home for dinner.

**she works at Coca-Cola's headquarters and she'll have a 15 minute commute. a real life changer!

Thank you to Carole and Kat for the prompt. I had no idea how to share this news ... but I think this worked! Click here to join the Think Write Thursday fun!

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Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Knitting Colors.

It's no secret that I love to wear neutrals. and since that's mostly what I wear, it's also mostly what I knit. So it was kind of a shock in class today that I was wearing a blue sweater and knitting on two decidedly colorful pieces (Brights and Sunshine Coast).

Of course the next few projects in my queue will get me back to my comfort zone (a cream cardigan, two pullovers in shades of gray and a cream/gray wrap). But I think I'm going to explore colors more, especially with accessories. I saw a friend before class and she was wearing this scarf. We got to talking about making it in Shibui's new linen, Reed. Shibui has great neutrals and pretty pops of color. to be continued....

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Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Sometimes Tuesdays.

...don't need any more words*.

*and I trust none of y'all will ask "why?" 😉


Monday, March 20, 2017


My weekend got off to a great start (especially with all the kind comments y'all left about my Friday afternoon FO post - thank you!). It's been a while since I've enjoyed a beer with Holly's evening walk.

Saturday morning was chilly and wet outside, but full of warmth and laughter inside. I was fortunate to have little Sam to myself for three whole hours! He danced a little jig on the floor while I heated up his bottle.

and then entertained me mightily by rolling over (and over and over).

I'm not sure what part of Saturday evening I enjoyed more - seeing Wisconsin beat Villanova, or (finally ... it's been a while!) seeing a new cork for my collection.

Yesterday, Holly and I enjoyed a long walk in the park. It wasn't nearly as warm nor as green as I expected, but the sky was blue.

I spent the rest of the weekend finishing the knitting on my Wisconsin sweater (the KAL in Amy's group on Ravelry ends at midnight tonight) and the latest Armand Gamache (oh my, I really loved this one).

Here's a sneak peek of the sweater since I'm not sure if/when I'll have a chance for Katie to take photos.  Not gonna lie - this yarn is a washable wool/silk blend and after a long soak in the sink this morning it was about a size XXL. oops! I crossed my fingers and put it into the dryer. first on extra low, then on low and finally on medium low. By the time it was dry, it was back to a size S. I couldn't be happier with it!

Today's lip color is Aussie Rose. (super happy with it, too!)

Hope your week is off to a bright, spring-like start. We're expecting warm sunshine tomorrow. Marc reports that the construction is in high gear at the golf course and our neighbors are hoping to shotcrete their new pool. I'm not even planning any other activities for Charlie tomorrow!

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Friday, March 17, 2017

FO Friday | Loulou and Mineral.

It was 40 degrees, drizzling and windy on Sunday morning, but Katie did a fine job with the camera - and now I have not one, but two!!!!, finished sweaters to share!

First up is Loulou, a pattern Amy Miller released in January. I bought it the day it came out, thinking the sweater quantity of Kid Classic I had (purchased on major sale a few years back when Rowan discontinued the color) would work. My stitch gauge was a smidge loose but the row gauge worked (phew, I would not want to recalculate that raglan shaping!). I knit the size 36 to get a 37. and I couldn't be happier with the fit. (thank you, Amy, for getting me to more ease and more length in my sweaters ... it works!)

This sweater was knit in pieces and seamed. The hardest part of the whole project for me was the exposed seams. seriously. two days of "knitting time" with a sewing needle. But what a cool detail!

The funnest part of the project was the texture stitch on the front and back. (I haven't looked at the finished piece too closely - if there are boo-boo's in the pattern, I don't want to know!)

I also learned a new-to-me technique - knitting an i-cord and then picking up stitches along the edge. I love the look - and it's easy!

A friend who owns a clothing boutique suggested the white jeans. It was colder yesterday when I wore the sweater again (hopefully for the last time this season) and I wore my boots (also hopefully for the last time this season 😉) ... definitely a better choice than those flats without socks! 

And here's Mineral.

This is the sweater I started on that lemonade day back in January. I finished it quickly (topdown seamless stockinette on size 8 needles - sweaters don't get much faster than that, especially when the pattern is written by Melanie Berg and just ... flows) and wore it once or twice before the February spring came. I took it to Madison and it was too warm to wear there, too. But I'm not complaining. 

It's a great piece - simple styling, that new "more ease, more length" fit, in one of my favorite Shibui colors. I know I'll wear it plenty next year!

Next week, maybe I'll have a Spring sweater to share. I'm close. and hopefully a weekend full of knitting and basketball is all I need to finish. What are you wishing for this weekend?

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Thursday, March 16, 2017

Throwback Thursday | Four(ish) Months.

Charlie's on the left and Sam is on the right. I see a lot more similarity in their actions than their looks!

(and what a difference a little mascara and LipSense - one layer of Aussie Rose and two of Apple Cider - makes for me!)

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Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Midweek Mash-up.

...aka I have nothing more than a few photos to share and they have not much in common with each other ... except that it's Wednesday!

First up, I dropped my taxes off this morning and was delighted to see a redbud in full bloom just outside the accountant's office. ♥ #blueskyblooms

Next, I wore my Fiona Coat today. I finished it way back in January and I've worn it a couple of times, but I've always had to take it off because it was too warm. Not today! These two photos will have to suffice for FOs because I totally hope it's too warm from here on out to put it on again before next fall.

And finally, my first LipSense order arrived (thank you, Carole, for the helpful and quick service!) Isn't her packaging wonderful?!

I'm getting used to the feel of the product on my lips, but I can certainly attest to it lasting all day long. I applied the color this morning and it still looks fresh. This is Roseberry and I love it!

OK, now that I've shared a few random thoughts 😉 - I hope you have one to share with me!

Here's to Wednesday! 

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Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Tuesdays with Charlie | Pi(e) Day.

2017 has given me the gift of Valentine's Day and Pi Day with my favorite toddler. A BIG Thank You to Bonny for alerting me to this double goodness and then sharing a delicious recipe for Apple Hand Pies.

I'm honestly not sure Charlie even knew about Pie before today (and I'm positive he still doesn't know about Pi) - but I think he might remember now! We followed the recipe pretty much as written (except that I bought Pillsbury pie crusts). We peeled and chopped apples and then cooked them in butter with a little sugar and cinnamon. Charlie kept a healthy distance from the stove.

And was happy to find a spoon to put the filling into the waiting crusts.

Of course he loved watching the baking.

(this wave was for his mama)

Note that I have no photo of the unbaked pies to share ... here they are just out of the oven.

We waited until after nap to try one.

Wow! It was delicious.

yep, was...

Pi Day is still relatively new for me. I learned about it from Katie and Sara who both took pies into math class during high school. I guess it's a big deal at Georgia Tech, too. I got a big kick out of their Instagram feed today, giving away pies. The rest of my Instagram feed has been (mostly) full of knitting, pies and snow. Of course on any day it's mostly full of knitting. The pies are fun. and for all of you with snow, I wish I could share one of our pies with you! Stay warm!

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