I have officially begun my Sous Sous! This isn’t a picture of it, of course. I got gifted 3 skeins of Noro Kureyon a month ago, and the entrelac urge hit! I wanted to finish that project before starting my sweater. I have a slightly ridiculous pile of knits to finish and take pictures of…
It was my birthday in early March. So I got some roses! And went out with friends! And family! I love celebrating, I really do. This year was kind of a big one (30), so I did it up proper. It’ll probably be low key for a few years now.
I brought my friend coffee at the yarn shop where she works, which I’ve mostly been avoiding while attempting to destash… For reasons exactly like this sweater: I fell totally in love! Look at that gorgeous tweed! I’m just crazy about the natural base with the little bright flecks of tweed! Look at the fabulous contrast of the colorwork body and the two tone sleeves! I love the little… epaulet style of that sleeve cap! The only thing I might do differently is change the color of the little sleeve cap, but I am seriously in love with this sweater. I dug around my stash and daydreamed about it, but I have a Sous sous that needs knitting first!
I’m just going to rip the band-off and start with the bad news, okay? Okay?
If you follow me on any form of social media, you’ll already know that our sweet little Baiza is no longer with us. She hadn’t really been well all winter. And we miss her terribly. She was so sweet and cuddly, excellent company and she always made me laugh.
This is the only place I haven’t specifically mentioned it, and it was starting to weigh on me. Okay. I’m really sorry to have started off with bad news, but here, let me distract you with other things. It’s the same technique I’ve been using for myself.
The crochet blanket: is all seamed together! It is a thing of beauty! It’s stalled again for the moment while I figure out some kind of edging situation. I’m leaning towards something like this, only… I’m not terribly excited about the idea of making over a dozen half-hexagons. Not least because the main tutorial everyone seems to reference has broken photo links, giving me NO visual cues to figure it out from. So I was going to try to modify the crochet edging I linked to flesh out the edges a little? Maybe?
We’ve been doing small bits and pieces of filming! And one of those pieces required super ’70’s glasses! Which, ironically, are very similar to a pair Jake had when he was a teeny tiny kid. I kind of wish I had a picture of that so I could share it with you… He’s probably happier that I don’t. ^_^
I got to see/meet Jason Segel! He was at ALA Midwinter, talking up a book he wrote. We all have those actors/pop stars/etc that we kind of secretly feel we’d be best friends with if only we knew them in real life, right? Well, Jason Segel is one of mine. He has always seemed like a really chill, funny guy, with pockets of nerdiness, and just really comfortable with who he is. So I was quite excited, and a bit nervous to meet him. In the end it was super brief, but I was actually really impressed with how present and invested he seemed with everybody who waited in line to meet him. That’s quite a skill all on it’s own. I think my people skills would dry up after about five people.
Jason Segel did agree to do an ‘update’ shout with me, though! That is visible just below:
Due to filming, and ALA Midwinter, I’ve been traveling all around neighborhoods in Chicago I don’t normally get to, which just fills me with an appreciation for how big and diverse it is, as well as pretty from almost any angle. I love it when the Sears Tower peeks out from behind things, perfectly framed.
I went on a tear of making tacos with ground turkey, which was delicious! Tacos, though… So much chopping! So many dishes to wash.
I’ve had this bamboo sock yarn for years. I loved the bright little polka dots in it, but never really got up a solid enough concept to give me any impetus to knit with it. Until! I decided a little stockinette version of a February Baby Sweater would just about be the cutest thing. Which got me so excited I cast on and finished it within a few days. Now I need to buy buttons and snaps! I’ve made this before, though never with the intended lace. My all time favorite version means that the stockinette version kind of became my default version.
A flower under my care bloomed! And not some leftover from the last time bloom, a full year after I got it! Maybe someday I’ll actually be able to take care of plants for real!
Well, the good news is: I’ve been working on some more blog posts. So you might actually get some regular posts out of me for a little while!
Happy New Years, friends!
We celebrated thanksgiving with food and gatherings multiple times, including once with this lovely bunch, and I was filled with love and thankfulness to be surrounded by such wonderful people.
I’ve been really liking this thin sweater layered over a patterned button down. This sweater is shockingly warm, too, so I suspect I’ll keep leaning on this look over the winter. It is making me wish I had more patterned button downs, and not exclusively in blue and white (classic though it may be).
I shared this picture for a throwback Thursday. This is from 10 years ago. My grandmother, aunt (whose wedding this was), my Mom, and me! This is one of my favorite pictures of all time, and I think it’s very possibly the only picture of the four of us, all kind of lined up like this. We look so very very related, don’t we?
This sweater has been done for weeks now and worn several times, but it lacks a photoshoot. Might try to make that happen this week!
You know how I loooooove a Christmas tree! Even though we went out of town for Christmas, we couldn’t not put up a tree! It’s extra tiny this year, which actually works better in the space! And the tree trimming isn’t complete without our annual watching of a Hallmark Christmas movie.
I tried not to get sucked into too much Christmas knitting this year, but I did end up churning out two hats in the week before Christmas to gift away.
We went to New Mexico to be with my Gramps, Aunt Les and cousins for Christmas. A kind of family-Christmas-present was a trip up to Ojo Caliente, a natural hot springs resort in northern New Mexico. It was beautiful and magical, and kind of cold, but the hot springs were hot and delightful, and we took advantage of the sun as much as we could and went hiking about in the surrounding hills.
In said hills were some Posi ruins, which mainly comprised of many many thousands of old ceramic shards strewn about the ground. Various people walking through had collected them in small groupings, and made little (or big) stacks of them, or would lay them on larger flat rocks. So I made my own, channeling Andy Goldsworthy, a kind of mandala, or halo. I easily could’ve spent another hour or two working on it.
New Years Eve we ended up inviting some people over last minute and spent the day cooking and tidying, and the evening eating, playing games (apples to apples & a telephone pictionary hybrid), and counting in the new year. It was lovely and cozy, and this is pretty much the only picture of it: food on the left, dishes from making food on the right, us in the middle looking kinda fancy. How debonair is Jake? (The answer is Very Debonair!)
A new year calls for new running shoes! They are long over due, and my feet are so pleased to be reminded what support feels like!
Whew! So that’s what I’ve been up to the last six weeks or so! Some of my last five FO’s and a new years round up are pending!
Also Known As: Life Lately According To My Phone.
One of my very favorite ladies got married on Halloween. I cried the moment she started to speak at the ceremony, because geeze, there’s something about people I love making life long commitments that brings out the sap in me. Properly contrasted with a duck face selfie, of course. I designed her invites, and hopefully someday I’ll get around to showing you those.
I borrowed a dress for the wedding and I’m kind of in lurve with it. Also, dressing up for this made me realize: a) my hair is pretty long and b) I don’t really know how to make it formal or even semi-formal at this length. Braids have been my default, but I need some new inspiration.
I decided to knit another ‘seasons hat’ for a friend who always wears hats. When there’s this many colors at play, I have to swatch a minimum of four times. I like where I ended up! This is pretty close to completion, depending on how much knitting time is in the near future.
Time is at a bit of a premium right now because PoPS is in full swing production! Which is time-consuming, but it’s wonderful to be getting this stuff done. Pre-production was a especially brutal this round (I’m looking at you, scheduling). Oh, this picture is hands belonging to myself and Carlyn. When we need a double for her on set, I don a wig, and rings.
Production at our place means I’ve been cleaning every room we’ve been about to shoot in. And then inevitably seeing corners of dustiness while we’re shooting. SIGH. Accidentally bleached my jeans with the tub-scrub stuff the other day. At least it looks kind of planned-ish?
Baiza has been a bit under the weather. It’s easy to forget how old she is, being as teensy and spry as she is, but occasionally her age catches up to us. She’s on the mend, and this little tent has been her favorite hide out. Chyna made it for Mitzy, who upheld the time honored pet tradition of not giving a rats-patootie about the things their people want them to, so I’m glad Baiza likes it!
Part of my family celebrated an early Thanksgiving with a meal, and I very much enjoyed how much Jake’s sweater matched the flowers on the table.
In this time of eternal cleaning and tidying, I’ve been shuffling through my wardrobe again, and I decided that my favorite chambray shirt has been out of commission long enough, and either needed to be tossed or fixed. So I took a cue from my favorite board dedicated to mending (specifically this) and went for it! It’s wearable again! I think the fabric is starting to give, so I’m not sure how much I extended it’s life, but oh well. I still like it!
What have you guys been up to?
A few years ago, Jake and I started to jog, as an attempt to stay healthy and fit. Mostly just outside, around our neighborhood. We were getting into it, trying to get a little more distance and challenging ourselves. As the seasons changed and it got dark earlier, it got more challenging, and after a tumble in which nothing was really harmed, but still hurt, I wasn’t so willing to keep jogging outside in the impending winter. So for New Years, we took advantage of the offers that gyms put out there, tempting people feeling a little extra jiggly after the excess of the holidays, and joined.
It’s been interesting to see how going to the gym has effected my perception of my own body. I never did any sports growing up, and distance running was always something my body tried to actively dissuade me of, so I don’t have anything to compare this to. When we’re being good, and getting there on a regular basis (I’d be lying if I said we didn’t accidentally take off a month here and there), I don’t honestly notice much of a change in my weight or shape. But I feel more pride in my own body, knowing what it is capable of. And I totally dig that. And feeling more pride in it has made me re-consider things I once saw as flaws. I’m less concerned about how big my hips are and more pleased with the muscles my thighs hold.
After a while of running at the gym, I started to wonder how I would do in a more public/pressured run, like a 5k race. Then I found out there was a crypt run in October at a large cemetery in Chicago. Perfect! I wheedled Jake into joining me, as it contained many elements of interest for him. We did a few weeks of training outside, since we’ve primarily been doing treadmill running. We tried to get a few hills in, average a distance of at least 5k, and do that a few times a week.
It was quite cold when we got there (about 40F), but we left our layers in the car. So we immediately put the t-shirts we received for participating in the race on over our shirts and hoodies (which I hear might be kind of gauche in terms of running ettiquette? idk). Dunkin Donuts was handing out teensy cups of coffee, which we took advantage of, huddling around them like bitsy campfires that we could wrap our hands around. There were a bunch of people dressed up in various Halloween-y costumes, vampires and zombies, etc. They had a good soundtrack playing by the start line, the Halloween movie theme song, and Thriller by Michael Jackson, of course.
Once the race started, we warmed up quickly. They gave us glowsticks (see above) so we could see each other, and the route was lined with little battery operated flickery candles, and some of the more interesting sites were lit with colored lights, and there was plenty of light from the streetlamps just outside cemetery limits, so it wasn’t very dark at all. I’d set a loose goal of finishing in 40 minutes (more because I do better with a specific goal than anything else) and we finished in 35! Jake had the GoPro with him, so he captured some of the actual running/route portions of the 5k:
It starts just after the 2:50 mark if you wish to skip to the relevent section.
I know that compared to other runners, it’s not much. But I’m not jogging/running for others. I don’t honestly see a marathon in my future, but I’d really like to do a color run next year, and I would totally do the crypt run again!
Let me take a moment to plug my very favorite app for running: Runkeeper. It has options for different kinds of excercise (walking, running, cycling, etc), keeps track of your route, pace, and calories burned, if you put in your weight. It can link to a playlist on your phone so that you can be listening to music/podcasts while you excercise. I also LOVE that it gives little 5 minute updates, telling you what minute mark you’re at, the distance achieved, and average pace. I find that really boosting, because I’m competitive with myself, so it always makes me push a little bit faster. The only potential downside is that it is really intended for use outside. So when I jog on the treadmill, I have to manually log that information instead of using the app as I excercise. That doesn’t bother me, though, as at least now I have one place where all of my excercise is logged.
Since this all sounds so very glowing, I kind of feel like I should say: Runkeeper has no idea I exist, they did not pay me to speak kindly of them. I just am really impressed with this app.
Some other fun things Halloween-y: Haunted Mansion, Part 1 Stuff You Missed in History Show Notes and Podcast and also part 2. It’s hard to see in the first pic, but my favorite running tshirt is a Haunted Mansion one!
silliness at a photoshoot
going to see the Veronica Mars movie
summer bike ride
making faces at a fancy restaurant, like you do
This anniversary was our fifth! And in April, we celebrated 10 years of being together, both of which feel fairly significant. This year has been a bit crappy in many ways, and it is so so nice to have things like this to remind me of all the wonderful things that are happening too, that good comes alongside bad, and that I am incredibly blessed. I always feel a bit hokey trying to write about these things, so I will borrow words*, but Jake really is the gilder of every pleasure, the soother of every sorrow.
* Words borrowed from a letter by Cassandra Austen about her sister Jane. But the moment I read them, they felt true.
i decided that the hexagon blanket needed another pale color, which i honestly don’t have any of, so i had to go out and buy this lovely ballerina pink koigu. i think i’m done crocheting hexagons, and i have commenced crocheting all of the hexagons together in chunks. i’m just the teensiest but worried that i’ll want one more column in the end, so i’m crocheting together portions around the area i would most likely add another column.
the third from the left is the one i took home, the second from the right is the color i might go back for. if you look back at where i was before i added the pink, you can see that the warm pinky tones are the spectrum least represented. thoughts?
i’ve been trying to take advantage of the absolutely beautiful weather we’ve been having, and while we were dog sitting, we also took advantage of the lovely backyard and ate outside. the potatoes in the middle of the table, by the way, were from this ridiculously simple and ridiculously delicious recipe.
and because reading at coffee shops (or in this case bakery with good coffee) is one of my very favorite things to do, i inevitably have to document it. i’m currently on the third book in this YA fantasy series about a female assassin (why yes, that does have my name written all over it).
another attempt to take full advantage of the weather, i went for an extremely fantastic walk in a prairie preserve, and filled my head with the feeling of the sun on my skin, the wind in the grass, butterflies flittering about, the buzz of bugs going about their lives. it was lovely in the extreme.
ah, this picture also exemplifies my (quite mild) obsession with photo editing apps, most recently, the double exposure feature of afterlight. i could do a whole blog post about photo editing apps, but i have no idea if any of you would find that helpful or interesting at all?
what have you been doing to take advantage of the season?