Saturday, July 4, 2015

project 52: week 43

What is Project 52? It's a little like Project 365, but instead of the goal of posting a photo each day, I'll post a photo or two each week along with a short update. Really I just need a little push to post something every week. Since I like to keep this space positive, posting every week forces me to look back and find something shiny to talk about (ten points if you get that reference). Some weeks that's a piece of cake. Other weeks it's more of a challenge, and those weeks give this task true meaning.






What's New?
It's been hot in Seattle. Very hot. And the forecast calls for more hot for as far as the eye can see. Maybe by this coming Friday it'll cool down to 80 degrees. It's been in the 90's during the days and barely getting down to the low 60's at night. It's hard to keep my apartment cool. My cats are melting. Forget about cooking, baking, or canning. Pass the sushi, please.

We spent the middle of this week camping at Penrose State Park, where we were able to enjoy a low-low tide. I've never been camping in such heat before, with a burn-ban, no less. Although cooking everything on the camp stove was interesting (did we attempt s'mores on the stove? oh yes, of course we did!), I honestly can't say I missed the fire. Sure, I miss the ritual of a fire, but I don't imagine we would have been sitting very close. It was just too darn hot.

In response to all this heat plus The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo I spent yesterday cleaning up and organizing our storage room. The storage is in the basement of our apartment building, so it's the coolest place to be. I've made piles to donate, recycled tons of unnecessary cardboard, and moved things around so that we can actually see what's in there. It used to be a jungle of boxes and things stacked willy-nilly on awkwardly placed shelves and often on the floor. Now the shelves line one wall, the floor area is clean and open, and we are on our way to owning less stuff.

Currently Reading
  • The Bone Clocks by David Mitchell
  • Grounded by Megan Morrison

On the Needles
My Wood Hollow Vest is ready for armhole shaping and neck shaping. Which means that now I need to really pay attention to the pattern so I don't mess it up.

My Earth & Sky shawl hasn't really started yet. I need to pick up another needle sizing gauge from my LYS since I can't seem to find mine. I have a bunch of inherited metal circular needles that are probably the right size, but they are not labeled like my wood circular needles are.

Looking Forward To
  1. the next CSA box

Saturday, June 27, 2015

project 52: week 42

What is Project 52? It's a little like Project 365, but instead of the goal of posting a photo each day, I'll post a photo or two each week along with a short update. Really I just need a little push to post something every week. Since I like to keep this space positive, posting every week forces me to look back and find something shiny to talk about (ten points if you get that reference). Some weeks that's a piece of cake. Other weeks it's more of a challenge, and those weeks give this task true meaning.


What's New?
It's hot in Seattle. Really, really hot. Well, not as hot as it gets in the mid-west or the east coast, but out here we don't really believe in air conditioners. Instead, our local libraries and community centers (and movie theaters and malls) operate as cooling centers. My basically-basement apartment has been hovering at 70 degrees no matter what I do (it's been 80-90 degrees outside). And that's without any baking and pretty much minimal cooking. Do you know how hard it is for me to give up baking and cooking? Pretty darn hard. But I just can't justify all the extra heat it produces in my tiny apartment. I have kale from my CSA share that is begging to be turned into kale chips, but sadly I cannot do it.

Instead, I made refrigerator kohlrabi pickles, sun tea that was promptly mixed with lemonade concentrate (from a canning adventure I had back in cold April), and one small batch of strawberry balsamic jam.

Currently Reading
  • The Bone Clocks by David Mitchell
  • Grounded by Megan Morrison

On the Needles
This week I started my Wood Hollow Vest again, for the third time. I initially started it last August, exactly as the pattern was written. I got into a groove and enjoyed all the cables, but I found some mistakes I made early on. I knit up about 6 inches before deciding to start over. The second start was last September. I restarted in order to knit it in the round. Big mistake. See, the cable pattern was easy to memorize knit flat, but in the round my brain just couldn't get a handle on it. So I made even more mistakes than I had the first time. And I wasn't happy with it at all. So I set it aside and knit other things. Fast forward to almost a year later, and I've ripped it out again in order to start over. This time I'm knitting it flat again like the pattern calls for, and I'm going slower knowing where I'll likely make mistakes.

I've made it through three full pattern repeats and I love these cables!


Looking Forward To
  1. helping dear friends move into their first house
  2. stitch & bitch
  3. happy hour with my old teaching buddy
  4. camping at Penrose with friends

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Summer Plans



Go Outside
:: pick berries & make jam
:: road trip to Yellowstone, Glacier, and DIG
:: garden
:: hike at Mt Rainier

Simplify Inside
:: organize storage room
:: sell or donate kitchen table, old desk, & loveseat
:: shampoo carpet (again)

Finish Projects
:: re-start Wood Hollow Vest
:: knit for new nephew Xander
:: turn fabric into shirts

Write
:: send Mom's journal
:: postcards to Daniel

Take Care of Self
:: make dentist appt
:: get yearly eye exam
:: walk with Kristi

Saturday, June 20, 2015

project 52: week 41

What is Project 52? It's a little like Project 365, but instead of the goal of posting a photo each day, I'll post a photo or two each week along with a short update. Really I just need a little push to post something every week. Since I like to keep this space positive, posting every week forces me to look back and find something shiny to talk about (ten points if you get that reference). Some weeks that's a piece of cake. Other weeks it's more of a challenge, and those weeks give this task true meaning.

I made my cats a sun-tent so they could enjoy the light and I could keep the house cool
What's New?
School's out for the summer! Of course I still need to go in next week for a training and to finish cleaning up my room... but I can start settling in to a different pace. Yesterday I helped Kristi pack up and move her classroom upstairs as part of a large reorganization process at her school. It was surprisingly refreshing to help someone else pack up after I have packed and moved my own classroom three years in a row. Next year I'll pack up and move again, as we transition into our new-new building.

Currently Reading
  • The Bone Clocks by David Mitchell

On the Needles
I started winding yarn for my Earth & Sky shawl. I bought three skeins of Madeline Tosh Pashmina for this shawl back in May, but I decided to wait until school was out to begin. Since I don't have a yarn swift/ball winder yet, and I bought this yarn online, I am winding it up myself. Winding yarn by hand without the aid of a swift definitely takes awhile, but I think it's a great anticipatory step in the process.

Looking Forward To
  1. sleeping in

Saturday, June 13, 2015

project 52: week 40

What is Project 52? It's a little like Project 365, but instead of the goal of posting a photo each day, I'll post a photo or two each week along with a short update. Really I just need a little push to post something every week. Since I like to keep this space positive, posting every week forces me to look back and find something shiny to talk about (ten points if you get that reference). Some weeks that's a piece of cake. Other weeks it's more of a challenge, and those weeks give this task true meaning.


What's New?
Last Saturday I went strawberry-picking with the intent to make jam the next day. And then it was a million degrees very hot in Seattle all week. And the cat had to go to the vet. Three days in a row. And now she's fine, of course. So today I get to venture into my fridge and assess the state of the berries. Maybe I'll make jam today? Or maybe I'll have a ton of rotting fruit to add to the compost? I certainly hope for the former. I want to make more strawberry balsamic jam this year since I did not make enough last year. Plus I kept giving those jars away. Silly me - I need to remember to save some for us.

In other news, due to the raging heat wave very hot weather I wore my four Wiksten tanks again this week. I realize that I have four handmade tops now, and not an entire handmade wardrobe, but those four tanks make me feel like a super-sewer. Especially since I love their fit, which I was able to customize, as well as the fabric. I have more fabric washed and waiting to be turned into another top. Maybe I'll try a Grainline scout tee? Or a Wiksten tova?

Currently Reading
I finished The Signature of All Things by Elizabeth Gilbert, which I gave four stars on Goodreads. Last night I started The Bone Clocks by David Mitchell.

Looking Forward To
  1. finishing up the school year

Saturday, June 6, 2015

project 52: week 39

What is Project 52? It's a little like Project 365, but instead of the goal of posting a photo each day, I'll post a photo or two each week along with a short update. Really I just need a little push to post something every week. Since I like to keep this space positive, posting every week forces me to look back and find something shiny to talk about (ten points if you get that reference). Some weeks that's a piece of cake. Other weeks it's more of a challenge, and those weeks give this task true meaning.


What's New?
On our walk last week Kristi and I came across this lovely patch of flowers. It used to be a stretch of grass, but now it buzzes with bees and butterflies. What a great way to change up a parking strip! Today I stumbled upon this article about a concerted effort to do more of this work - converting parking strips into pollinator gardens. I'm going to do some more research into this idea and plant some flowers in my garden to attract pollinators. Then I'll talk to my landlord about doing something similar to the parking strip in front of my apartment.

Currently Reading
I've been steadily working my way througThe Signature of All Things by Elizabeth Gilbert, and I am almost finished. With just one more week of school left, I am eagerly looking at my Goodreads lists with the intention of putting together a summer reading list.

On the Needles
I stopped by Pacific Fabrics yesterday on a whim. I was heading to another store for some staples and realized I would pass by the fabric store on the way. I am so glad I decided to stop because I found a lovely collection of summer fabrics (double gauze, cotton lawn, etc) and ended up buying a couple yards for yet another Wiksten Tank. I've been wearing my tanks as much as I can, all the while thinking critically about their fit, making alterations in my head. I really love how I am able to make small changes to the pattern to make it fit my body better.

Looking Forward To
  1. picking strawberries
  2. planting my garden

Saturday, May 30, 2015

project 52: week 38

What is Project 52? It's a little like Project 365, but instead of the goal of posting a photo each day, I'll post a photo or two each week along with a short update. Really I just need a little push to post something every week. Since I like to keep this space positive, posting every week forces me to look back and find something shiny to talk about (ten points if you get that reference). Some weeks that's a piece of cake. Other weeks it's more of a challenge, and those weeks give this task true meaning.

Two more Wiksten Tanks, this time in linen.
Garden beds ready for planting.
What's New?
I finished two more Wiksten Tanks, bringing my total to 4: the two newest are neutral colors, while the other two are bold colors. I'm very excited about these handmade pieces and I've worn them a few times already. One thing I noticed after finishing the last two is that the back of the tank is low enough that I can wear them to the DIG School without getting sunburned. We spend so much time at the DIG School bent over on our hands and knees looking for fossils on the ground. Last year I noticed that all of my shirts, while seeming long when standing straight up, rode up just enough to expose a thin sliver of skin to the beating sun creating a thin and awkward sunburn.

Last weekend I bought some plants for my garden, but I didn't have enough time to get them in the ground. This week was far too busy to accomplish that in my evening hours, but I hope to do some gardening this weekend. I started my garden plans way too late for seeds this year, so I went with what was available at the nursery. I came home with snap peas, tomatoes, rosemary, lavender, and a few other small herbs.

Currently Reading
I'm in the middle of The Signature of All Things by Elizabeth Gilbert, which I am enjoying greatly.

Looking Forward To
  1. picking strawberries?