To observe, enjoy and create in everyday life

Sloooow Knitting and Reading

I hit a lull in the last two months where it was taking me forever to read any books or to make any progress on this sweater. The books I read in the months of August and September were quite good...they just took me awhile to work through them. It is strange how some seasons I can zip through a book and others I cannot. 
One of the books I read, Firefly Lane, got to a point in the story that I knew was going to be horribly sad so I set the book down for at least three weeks before picking it back up again. I only had 30 pages left, but I could not bring myself to finish it. I finally grabbed a box of kleenex and finished the book. It was a good story, but I typically do not like books that end sadly. There's enough sadness in real life, that it is hard for me to read fiction that is sad as well. Does that make sense? 
Another great but slow for me read was the first book in The Crusades Trilogy by Jan Guillou. This was a fantastic book, and I plan on reading the other two in the trilogy. It takes place in Sweden in the 1150s...not a time period I would choose to live in! This first book follows a very young boy from his family home, to his education in a monastery back to his family home as a young adult. Why he lands at the monastery and the type of training he receives (from scholarly training to sword and archery skills) is not very typical, which causes complications when he comes back home. I am interested in seeing what the next book holds for this character.
Currently I am reading Jane Kirkpatrick's latest book, One More River to Cross. I am only a third of the way through the book, but I can tell you already that I will love it. I can say this, because I have yet to read a book of Kirkpatrick's that I didn't love. This particular novel follows a real world story of a wagon train that crosses through the Sierra-Nevada mountains in 1844, two years before the Donner Party's crossing. As is usual for me and her books, I am already sucked into the characters! 

We traveled quite a bit through the month of August, so I didn't knit as much as I would have liked. I didn't want to bring my sweater project camping, so I worked on smaller projects like some new crocheted dishcloths. I did pick the project back up in September and added more rows. I am finally finished (as of last night!) with the body of the sweater and am ready to split the front from the back to begin the sleeves. It's exciting to see the project grow little by little.
I was slowed down this month by a kitten who decided to chew my yarn in half and a pup who always wanted to sit on my lap whenever I sat down though! We had my sister's dog Auggie (isn't he a cutie?!) staying with us for a couple weeks in September while she and her new husband honeymooned in France. Auggie is a frequent visitor in our home, and we always love having him here. He just went back home this week, so I am back to knitting with a free lap.

One last project I have worked on this month is a little baby quilt for some friends who just adopted a newborn baby boy. I pulled a stack of blues and greens from my stash and settled on a scrappy patchwork quilt. I decided to add in the melon orange fabrics for a pop of color, and I am really happy with how the quilt top tuned out! I love scrappy quilts. It's fun to pull the squares as I build the rows and remember the different quilts that I have also used those fabrics in. Some of these fabrics were leftovers from my nephew's quilts, my boys' quilts and other baby quilts. Sewing together a quilt for a little one is a great experience. It's a good time to think about the parents and the adventure they are beginning on and to pray for the new baby who will be wrapped up in all of these patchwork squares.
I had thought I would have had time to quilt it last weekend, but that was not the case..maybe this weekend? Either way. It will be finished soon!

Linking up with Ginny's monthly Yarn Along.


  1. I have always admired those who quilt such personal pieces! The blanket is lovely. I adore birch trees - what a nice design! And I love blue and orange together. The colors balance such a nice level of soothing and cheer. :-)

    Sad stories: I will admit that I have pretty much decided to avoid the novels that end "too" sadly at this point in my life. Also, there is such turmoil in the everyday world, I just can't take the anguish in a story that I'm choosing to settle into. I think I actually made that decision years ago after my favorite English professor recommended "Vinegar Hill" by Ansay. I was still in that mode that if I start it, I should finish it. Well, no more.

    However, there is one particular tear-jerker I still recommend: "The Light of the Evening," by O'Brien. Again, no happily ever after, and I remember literally laying my head down on my desk and crying at one point, but I still recommend it.

    BUT, if I could only give one recommendation to another woman, it would be: "The House at the End of Hope Street" by Menna van Praag. Every woman should read it. It is one of my favorites - ever. I just learned a week ago that it is also one of my mother-in-law's favorite books.

    Well, forgive the ramble, Bekah! I hope you are yours, four-legged and two, have a wonderful weekend! :-)

    1. No apologies needed for rambling...I am a rambler myself (ask my husband!). I have not read either of your recommendations, so I will put those on both on hold at the library. Thank you for the book suggestions. I am always looking for new reads!

  2. I totally didn't do a yarn along post this time (again) because I'm not really knitting or reading either. I had a very busy summer of knitting so I think I need to catch my breath a little. Although Rhinebeck (NYS Sheep and Wool) is coming up VERY soon and I'd like to have something new to show for it. But alas, that might not happen. I've been in a reading slump but The Crusades Trilogy and One More River to Cross both sound intriguing. And the quilt looks amazing! I love the added pop of color too.

    1. I hope you find a good book to read soon, and a fun new knitting project! Now that things are winding down outside, it is a great time for reading and knitting...or both! I have been listening to Treasure Island on CraftLit's podcast while I knit as well. Somehow I never read that book when I was younger.

    2. I keep hearing about craftlit. I need check it out. There are so many of the classic books that I haven't read and listening to them while knitting seems just the thing!

    3. It's a great way to revisit some classic lit or find new-to-you classic lit that you never read! I think the woman who runs the podcast is in your neck of the woods too!