Sunday, August 21, 2016

Sunday, Aug. 21: A week, and much to look forward to, left!

N's last day at Williamstown; one week of vacation; final steps on a lot of projects, and possibly some rain tonight! Yay! Here are my reads of late (two duplicates as I can't screenshot half a row!). .  . Time to prep for church!

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Wed., August 10: Finished a Memorable One!

A Tale for the Time BeingA Tale for the Time Being by Ruth Ozeki
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

A Tale is a mind-blowing book. I read it slowly, sometimes needing a break for a simpler story-line and less nuance, but I'm glad I persevered. Still amazed that it was not until the end that I realized that, in this novel about creating narratives by reading them and creating realities by living them (and a blend of both ideas, too), the protagonist and her husband have the same names as the author and her husband. As a student used to say, =Mind.= =Blown.=

So don't even start with what the book is about: love, death, family, the internet, human cruelty, WWII, the tsunami of 2011 and resulting nuclear plant meltdown, human cruelty, nature, dreams. . . with a big helping of Japanese cultural aspects that tend to make me uncomfortable (suicide clubs, cosplay, etc) and a terrific grandmother figure. I'll be thinking about this one for a long time to come.

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Lovely, going-to-be-hot morning after a nice Tuesday that featured an early run (great to get it done but I am fearful that my soreish foot is turning into plantar fasciitis), some good work and projects, and then a fun trip to Bar Harbor to see "Love and Friendship" with Heather and Lori. What a treat! Today, I finished my book above, chatted online with some friends, and am planning to go make a fabric checkbook cover because 1. heck, I can! and 2. I don't like those ugly cheesy plastic covers but don't want to pay for a better one!

Andy is due home tonight. I plan to swim around noon. . . . and then repair my SUP, read some Lady Susan, and make dinner of some sort. Onwards!

**What a lovely, lovely summer. We need rain badly, but I am trying to treasure what is precious since I am not in charge. **

Also, as support for the Olympic viewing and filler knitting in place of 100000000 pairs of booties:

Not my idea, not my choice of pattern or colors; inherited partway finished (up to the white arrows, really). I found a general pattern and added more shaping and more color, finished the collar, and did the button band the other night. I hope to do the next button band tonight (?) so I can sew it up and block it soon. Can't wait to see what a good bath and shaping can do for it. Then: who needs/wants a big ol' non-Lopi Lopi sweater? :)

Saturday, August 6, 2016

Saturday, August 6: Rich Summer Continues!

     We need rain, badly, but might get some tonight––of course we had planned to go see "Comedy of Errors" at Fort Knox––but the rest of the summer is rich, full, and lovely. We had a wonderful five days on Taylor Pond, courtesy of the California Whites, and enjoyed stunning weather except for a hazy afternoon when we went to see the unabashedly fun "Ghostbusters 2". Much fun in the sun, the water, and with family:

Last Sunday A and I returned home, sighing a bit, and settled into our quieter but wonderful life here. I read Ta-Nehisi Coates's amazing piece Between the World and Me, worked on an experimental tank top with the Sorbetto pattern (nearly done), and actually managed to pull off a leisurely summer knitting group meeting with Dawn and Jen on our patio, breezes, a lovely rhubarb-cornmeal tart, and lots of fun talk and knitting! And. . . banjo lessons! And . . . . some monumental salads

We've also gotten my beloved Corolla up to the dealership for a major (okay, overdue) spa treatment of $2k proportions (but we hope that holds her for a few years!), I attended a good one day PBE conference in Brewer with Heather, put on by the State, and I finished my second of four PBE classes with a perfect score (booyah!) but, more importantly, a sense of how to do research at the graduate level and some rich topics for investigation. Hmmmmm. 

Lyle is pondering next steps, and Nate is pondering the end of his incredible, intensive, powerful, crazy, exhausting summer apprenticeship at Williamstown Theater Festival, and is due home in about two weeks. I plan/hope to finish some projects (tank, checkbook cover, and inherited sweater, I'm looking at you three!), repair my SUP and use it, do some writing course planning for school, hike some, see more friends, and do some summery stuff I can't do otherwise. Mostly, I want to continue to love and appreciate this time, soaking it in. Onwards, gently and with awareness! 

ETA: WOOT! WOOT! A sewing victory!

I rarely have these. . . . at least beyond quilts and pj pants! I am slow, often reluctant, overly cautious, or downright dense about sewing, especially adapting patterns to fit my particular self. However, the free Sorbetto tank pattern (linked above) was a success! I am so late to that party that the blog's comments are closed, even for this summer's Sorbetto sewing party, but I am so tickled that I'm sharing anyway: 
AND will sport that product to church tomorrow! 

A couple quick remarks: using parchment paper for my cutting-out pattern version was great, and much easier than trying to adapt the standard-paper model I pieced together from the pdf. That was a hint from the online community. Thank you!

Another trick that delights me is this idea of how to make my own bias-tape: here's the link, and thank you to "Creative Daisy" who showed the way and saved me from ordering a limited gadget. I liked making that tape for the neck and arm holes so much that I decided to use it on the hem (1" size) too--also to add a bit of length and give more heft to weight the front pleat a bit. I really enjoy it, and I'm delighted to think that, with this tutorial as well, I can do a much better job on the edges of future quilts, as well! 

The learning! The learning! The learning! I really loved it!