October

October, October, October, how I welcome you. You are always so full of fun activities, good food and wonderful opportunities.

Along with all of that, I hope to cram in a few projects and goals. Fingers crossed, here goes:

1. Water, water, water.

2. Stairs, stairs, stairs.

3. Make 3 Christmas gifts.

4. Purge my closet (again).

5. Read on the porch.

Knitting

There has been knitting, lots of knitting in fact. I’ve found myself drawn to one particular yarn and smaller projects, particularly hats. There are a few sweaters in there as well. Oh, and even a little crocheting.

I am truly in love with madelinetosh yarns. Not all of my projects lately have used it, but I find myself drawn to finding patterns to best showcase it. The red Plover hat was one of those, as have been a few assorted cows and such.

Here’s a sampling of what I’ve been up to lately.

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Despite

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Sometimes, despite what is going on around you, you cull out your own little bit of happy. Over the weekend, despite all of the reasons we had to be grouchy and glum, we had a really nice few days.

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The beautiful weather, the cool underlying breeze, a road trip or two. . . the opportunity to spend the entire day together, most of it in the car, but nonetheless.

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We chose pumpkins and mums. We bought a new car. We chatted. We listened to the radio. I knitted. He sang.

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And despite ourselves, I chalk it up to good, all good.

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Transition

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I talk a lot about the seasons. I talk about them a lot, don’t I? And I recently had a pretty lengthy conversation with our current house guest, my youngest brother, about how they really define the rhythms of my life. We also pondered the idea that in our part of the country, the changing of the seasons is a bit of a ritual for us. We open the windows in the spring. We dig in our gardens in the summer. We pull out sweaters in the fall and add extra blankets to our beds in the winter. We change our eating habits, our sleeping patterns and daily routines based on the temperature and the amount of sunlight available.

I’ve noticed us doing a bit of that lately. We finally, thanks again to our house guest, got some of the big painting projects out of the way. The moment we felt the first cool breeze, we were called to prepare our porch, abandoned for a bit during higher temperatures, in anticipation of fall afternoons and evenings of knitting, reading and listening to the cicadas. That fury spread to our living room whenever my painting sibling offered to tackle it for us. Alas, projects that were looming over us were marked off the list.

I suspect part of it had to do with momentum, but part of it also resulted from that inner voice that tells you that after autumn comes winter and we don’t tackle many projects in winter, do we? At least not ones that involve us carrying ladders in and out of the house and opening windows to let the breeze dry the paint for us.

And I find myself knitting sweaters. Two in the past month or so. Complete, blocked, folded and ready to go. I also pulled out my “real shoes” and tucked away my sandals.

I have been moving through the rituals of preparing for the next season and I’m not sure I even noticed. Perhaps my first clue should have been when I started bidding farewell to my summer garden, cutting back the flowers that were no longer blooming and contemplating mums.

As I left this morning for work, I noticed the owner of the small farm stand across the street was carefully placing gourds and pumpkins along the tables and in the boxes. He too was moving from summer and welcoming autumn.

So, we’re cracking out the honey and hot tea. I’m going to add a blanket to the end of the bed. I’ll start my obsession with butternut squash soon. I might put a roast in the crockpot and I’m wishing we had a fire pit.

 

Daybook 1

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I’m listening to: I’ve been listening to Patty Griffin. Right now it seems to be all Patty, all the time. However, I’m starting to sprinkle in some Counting Crows; I just can’t escape the 90s and well, they have a new CD out. . . due to be delivered any day.

I’m wearing: In an effort to appreciate my closet for what it’s worth AND to really make some decisions on paring it down, I am wearing something different every day for 30 days. Today it’s a thrifted linen shirt, my black capris and my glasses.

My to do list: I’m trying to keep my list short and sweet. Right now it’s full of “want to dos” vs. “have to dos” and I like it that way. I want to plant more Swiss chard in the garden. I want to listen to more music. I want to pull out autumnal decorations. I want to bake muffins.

I’m currently reading: I’m doing very little reading lately. . . honestly. However I’m drawn to pieces about and for writers. I think that’s an indication of where I’m headed.

I’m thinking about: Who I want to be when I grow up. I’m still trying to decide. And all I am certain of is that I want to be happy and loved. The rest will fill in as needed.

I’m praying about: Peace for those I love. Peace in my decisions. Peace in who I am.

I’m thankful for: Quiet. Words.

I love it when: I get my pillows positioned just right, and I can smell the lavender chamomile linen spray I just spritzed over them. And I’m perfectly comfortable. So comfortable that I begin to pray. Names and faces come to me. I pray for them, sometimes unsure as to what I am really seeking.

I love it when I find a sweet little ripe tomato in my garden long after I assumed the plant was producing anything.

I love it when I have my afternoon glass of cold tea and it is just enough to help me trudge through that last hour.

 

Time

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I get a little giddy over long weekends. The gift of an extra “free” 24 hours is just enough to make me dance. Granted, I can’t dance, and I have no rhythm, so it’s a bit pathetic, but I did want you to truly understand my joy.

It’s not that I had any big plans for last weekend. It’s not that I was really anticipating anything grand, but the whole idea of having some extra time away from the “grind”, well, it was exciting.

You’d think I’d turn that excitement into something marvelous. Perhaps build shelters for the homeless, contemplate the meaning of “Dirty Dancing”, find world peace or bake a cake. I didn’t do any of those things.

Instead, I hung out. Yep, I’ve perfected it. I hung out by myself on Friday. On Saturday we hung out with Cynical’s folks. That night we hung out over dinner and movies with my brother. On Sunday we simply hung out at home. On Saturday I did venture to Kroger, where we hung out a bit before going to my folks where we hung out some more. And that night. . . well, you guessed it, I hung out.

I accomplished nothing, unless you count a few loads of laundry, clearing some well done flowering plants from our yard, and cooking every vegetable I could think of or knitting about 40 percent of a would-be sweater.

That’s the glory of extra time, right? More time to hang out, uninterrupted, free from pressures. And we seized every moment.

Right now. . .

I am savoring time with my brother.

I want to create.

I am anticipating a gorgeous and rejuvenating fall season.

I am planning handmade Christmas gifts.

I know I am blessed.

I am bidding farewell to my summer garden and absorbing lessons learned.

I am praying for peace for those I love.

I am feeling the call to write and write big.

I am ready for big change.