yarn along: finished shawl! new socks! and a side note on gratitude.

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I FINALLY finished this shawl.  Well – correction – I finished binding off.  There was slight panic about not having enough yarn, and you can see in some pictures how much was left.  Perfect, in some ways, but wow – the binding off took forever and I just kept imagining getting to about 30 stitches from the end and being completely out of yarn.  Thankfully there was a happy ending in that regard.  It was a picot bind-off, so that meant casting on 2 stitches, and binding off 3, repeat. Sooo… I had 400-something stitches to bind off, and … that figures out to upwards of, yeah, a lot of stitches until I was done.  It’s what I worked on all weekend while we went camping.  (Yes, it was the Weekend of Sweaty Stickiness, hence the ginormous cup of iced coffee in the top picture.)

So I still have some ends to weave in, and blocking to do… which I can’t wait to see because blocking is always magic. I tried to pull out the edges in a couple of the pictures to show what it’s going to look like.. somewhat unsuccessfully. But anyways, more in another post once it’s blocked.   I felt a little bereft to not have the comforting familiarity of this shawl to work on once I got done, sooooo…. I cast on a pair of socks.  They are for Mr. E, and hopefully for Christmas.  Immediately I sighed a sigh of happy relief, because there truly is nothing like knitting a pair of vanilla socks for knitting joy.  They are simple, rewarding, and they also stripe!  I cast on 64, doing magic loop, and am doing a basic knit 2 purl 2 for the whole sock.  The yarn is PatonsKroy – which I love.  It’s woolly yet soft, and seems to wear well.  And it’s cheap!  And it stripes!

(Have I mentioned yet that I love stripes?)

I just finished this book, “A Flight of Sparrows” by Amy Belding Brown.  It was a random pick at the library, mostly because when the cover of a book is beautiful, it calls my name.  I’m not one who loves a lot of historical fiction/novels but this one was really good.  It’s set in early America, with the Bay Colony Puritans, and it tells the story of a woman captured by Indians. I’m forgetting, but I think it might actually be based on a true story.  There are parts that are gory, describing an Indian massacre… which turned my stomach and yet it was a part of history.  It also showed the kindnesses of the Indians and did not ignore the unfairness of the Americans and their pompous and brutal way of going about taking land that was not theirs for the taking, as well as many who viewed the Indians as less than human.  The heroine ended up struggling to fit back into her original lifestyle when returned, because she grew to love the Indians and their way of life, especially their honesty and straightforwardness.  I appreciated the way that this author didn’t sugarcoat reality… in human emotions or history, either one.

Also – apologies for the poor photos.  Inside + no electricity (there was a huge thunderstorm yesterday afternoon and we were without electricity for several hours) + bad lighting = washed out pictures.

There’s so much to be grateful for today… when you lose electricity, you don’t take the lights and the water faucet and the air conditioning for granted. My laundry whirls and spins this morning.. my dishwasher cleaned a pile of dishes, my oven baked an almond coffee cake for the company coming this weekend….and yes.  We are blessed. So blessed.

We drove through West Virginia this past weekend where the flooding was… and yet again was reminded of how easy it is to complain.  Right before us was devastation.  Houses that were completely off their foundations. Piles and piles of debris raked to the side of the road.  Mud splatters on the outside of a house where mud had been shoveled out a window.  Flowers and wreaths on the few concrete blocks that was all that was left of a life, a home, a neighbor… Houses on either side that were in various stages of cleanup or mess, and all that was in the middle was a little concrete… part of a foundation.   And just a few weeks ago there were lives there.  Suppers eaten, coffee brewed, messes made, laundry done just like in my house today.  Simply losing electricity in that storm would have been such a gift.

I’m humbled.

Life can change so quickly..

There are so many thanks to be giving..

Joining . Ginny

 

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