Sunday, April 28, 2019

Digging Into It

Following up on my mini-post about travel and exhaustion, I've found myself using different words to describe the situation to myself, and being the word-lover that I am, it's interesting to me how they paint opposing pictures of a situation.

If I say that travel, and how it takes me out of my routines, is exhausting, it can go two ways:

  • If I try to be flexible, but in fact I'm _not_ flexible, then that makes me rigid. Doesn't sound particularly good, does it?
  • In everyday life, I find routines to be of great support to my mental health, and when that gets upended by travel, while I can cope, it is as mentally exhausting as the literal suitcase-carrying part of travel is physically exhausting. That doesn't sound as bad, does it?

I don't know. I don't have a stunning, tie-it-all-together conclusion here. I'm just trying to make sense of why the last two weeks knocked me down as much as they did. I haven't done much this weekend*, and it's  has been wonderful.
*Kitten photos to come, though, I did do that much!

Mind you, last night's Bruins game just had to go into overtime, didn't it? And then a second overtime? And finish shortly after midnight? I could have used a few more hours of sleep, but oh well. (They lost, too.) I can go to bed early tonight; I really don't care who wins the San Jose/Colorado game, so I can turn it off any time, and I will, too.

To end on a lighter note, I had to grab a photo of the card on some flowers that Grandma got, from her brother's family. The family name is Pedersen, not Pederson, and when you look at this, you can hear someone spelling it out carefully, can't you? "P-e-d-e-r (pause) s-e-n"
And someone without any common sense at all wrote it down that way.

Saturday, April 27, 2019

Impossibly Tired

I can't be as tired as I think I am, and yet. Here is the 50-year-old, complaining about how tired travel makes her, after she traveled with her 80-year-old-mother to see her 105-year-old grandmother.


More about the trip to come. Meanwhile, enjoy these photos of Cazenovia, New York, which has some pretty cool architecture.

Wednesday, April 24, 2019

Ten Years. Ten Years?

Once again proving that time is an elusive concept for the human mind to comprehend, I can't believe that it's ten years since my dad died. Because:
  • That's way too long. He hasn't been gone that long--it can't be!
  • It has to be more than that. It feels like forever since he's been here.
It does seem funny to me that I can sincerely believe both of these are true.

The picture of him that I have up on my wall is one of my favorites.

Monday, April 15, 2019

Hockey! NHL and Minor-League

We leave for Grandma's birthday visit tomorrow morning (so, so early, ugh; it's the price we pay for, well, paying a low price, and getting direct flights to boot)*, but before we go, I want to squeeze in a little hockey talk. For instance if anyone wants to talk about the Bruins vs Toronto series (game three tonight!), hit me up, but also the incredible Tampa vs Columbus series, because wow, what on earth is happening there? Tampa was better than the rest of the league by a mile, and now faces elimination without winning a game? Craziness.
*No idea if I'll blog from there or not. We'll see! If not, see you in a week or so.

Then there's the minor leagues: last week, my mother and I went to one of the last regular-season games of the Florida Everblades, and had a good time. As seen in photos!

Someone spelled aioli correctly (no matter what Blogger's spell-check thinks), but crashed on "toated bun," which is pretty hilarious.
We got there early, in time to eat at the restaurant in the arena. The view from there:
The food was fine, and being right there does get you into the spirit.

The view from our seats was good, too.
A couple of notes if you should go: first of all, the place was freezing, and I do mean freezing. Layer up, maybe bring a blanket. I was wearing my Bruins sweatshirt, because of course I was, and I never pull the hood up when I wear that, but guess what, I was glad to have it before the game was over.

Second, it's rather weird that the seats are not all the same size, but when we went back to our seats after going for a snack (the pretzel was not nearly as good as the one I got at the Panthers game, though it was a lot cheaper), we went into the seats the other way than we had been, and when I sat in the seat Mom had been in, it was about an inch or two narrower than the one I had been in. Weird, right?

Center ice:
The yellow jerseys were just for warm-ups, I imagine because of the recent name change to Hertz Arena.
Sign on the visitor's bench.
The other team had a guy named Playfair!
Old-school scoreboard. It did have video in the middle, but the Coke sign at the bottom physically rotated to change.
Apparently Geico sponsors the goal posts?
The Everblades are quite good this year, but it wasn't their best game. Normally, if you're outshooting your opponent 17-5, you aren't down 2-1.
There were lots of in-game sponsored things, like this guy in green:
Who charged around during a break in play, and then went up and down by seats collecting trash, since apparently he was a waste company tie-in. Okay then.
But it was fun. Very loud, very cold! But I would go again.

And now: go, Bruins!

Sunday, April 14, 2019

Kittens, Cat

Remember the kittens from last week? They're seven days older and (if possible) even cuter!

Little girl:
Chow time. It takes a lot of energy to race around as much as they do.
Little boy:
Awesome toy with extra-long tail.
"How cute am I?"
And just to finish on a cat note, here is a cat who absolutely wasn't drinking out of my water glass.
(She was totally drinking out of my water glass. Or as I should call it, the glass of water that used to be mine.)

Friday, April 12, 2019

For the Word Nerds, Read This

Even if you aren't a professional editor, if you love words, and reading about words and the things people do to them, I highly recommend this book:
I didn't agree with every single thing, but I liked his style from the beginning.

"I sometimes feel as if I spend half my life prying up commas and the other half tacking them down someplace else" may be more of an editor thing:
But I think that "I had no idea what I wanted to be when I grew up, which is a problem when you've already grown up" has, I suspect, broader appeal.
And haven't you noticed before "how many lists of twelve things contain only eleven things"?
Anyway, if these bits make you think you'd like the book, read it! And if they don't, you likely wouldn't enjoy it, so pass on by.

Wednesday, April 10, 2019

Miss Maggie Is Ready

Ready for her close-up! The kittens are all well and good, but the permanent resident would like to be appreciated as well.

Tuesday, April 09, 2019

So Much Knitting

I doubt that anyone who reads this blog at all regularly skips past all the knitting content, since that must be half of what I put up (maybe more?), but if in fact that is you, congrats, you can skip today: it's all knitting-related content (well, a little ties into Grandma's upcoming birthday, but that still has a knitting angle). It's also going to be kind of random order: you've been warned!

I am still working on the lap blanket, and recently joined the fourth yarn ball, so it's officially more than three-quarters done. I really like how the colors are pooling; sometimes pooling is the kiss of death in a project, but in this one, I find what it's doing fun!
Next, I finally, finally got around to framing two items, one of which is knitting-related (the other isn't, unless you count periods where sloth overcomes accomplishment in knitting, but I love it, too).
The yarn-sea print is one I got on etsy, and the ekatearcher shop has a lot of other cool images. (The sloth came from Pickled Punks Plush, at the Apple Festival a few years ago.) Here they are on the wall at last.
Back to actual knitting. For Grandma's upcoming 105th (!) birthday, I knit her some flowers, as you do. The pattern is Flowers for Mam, and they were simple to make, and used up bits of leftover yarn. I like the touch of the stem being a knitting needle: I have plenty of old, odd needles, so why not use them for this?
As for a card, I found an artist on etsy, POPARTsculpture, who makes lovely cut-paper cards, and commissioned one from her. Since for some reason, of all the ages she had ready in her shop, she didn't have one for 105. Weird, right? She did a beautiful job.
It stands up, a little, and I hope Grandma likes it.
Back in January, I took a wild leap away from the Skyp pattern I always have going as purse socks, and cast on a Claire sock instead. I recently finished the first sock, and while I do like it, I'm not making the second one right away.
(The photo above is darker than the yarn really is; the photos below are lighter. Such is photography.)

It isn't classic second-sock syndrome; I just find the Skyp pattern pleasingly simple to have as carry-around knitting, so I cast on another of those, instead.
Using the Dream in Color Smooshy with cashmere I got from the Loopy Ewe in January. Lovely yarn. So simple.

I've made more progress on the little shawl I'm knitting, but it's (also) currently put aside while I ponder on how, halfway through the edging, it seems like it's going to leave me with a lot of yarn I won't use. Which isn't a huge problem, except that it's a small shawl, and if I could use most of the yarn and make it bigger, that would be better. But am I right? Am I miscalculating? Let it sleep while I consider.

Which means, of course, that I need to have something else to bring for knitting-on-the-plane. First, I started swatching for the Ty-Dy cotton top.
I quite like the look and feel of the yarn, but apparently it's a really good idea with cotton yarn* to wash and dry the swatch (something I honestly don't always bother with), since cotton grows. And I don't want to rush that process, being new to the whole knitting-in-cotton thing, so since the trip is coming up fast, that's going to wait its turn. I already know I want to make the top longer than the pattern states, but I don't want it to grow to knee length or anything. Math will be involved.
*Honestly, it's a good idea anyway, but apparently with cotton, it's crucial.

So what to knit, what to knit? I pondered this yarn and that, this pattern and that, not feeling the love for anything, and finally hit upon the Across the Waters non-shawl. Went poking through the stash for a DK and a fingering-weight, and really fell for this combination:
And here it is after one wedge (I finished another last night).
The blue yarn is Yaksi, from Blue Moon, which is a discontinued DK weight made of wool, yak, and silk. The green I got at the Scandinavian Weave and Knit booth at Apple Festival in 2016 (which I don't think they go to any more, but they do go to Rhinebeck*), and is a fingering weight of merino with cashmere and nylon. I love the colors together, the way they aren't multicolored but aren't just solid, either. Tonals for the win!
*and this year, so am I! have I not mentioned that? going with my friends! so excited!

All right, I think that was all the knitting-related stuff I wanted to catch up on. Whew. Congrats on making it to the end!