Day 20: A Smaller World

One of the reasons I started an account at Postcrossing was to bring the world to my door. The idea of getting mail from around the world was very enticing. It's unlikely I'll ever travel outside the USA and it's even more unlikely I'll travel the around the world, but a postcard in my mail box from Germany, Ukraine, Australia, Malaysia, Russia, France, China, or Brazil, makes the world feel a smaller place. I have postcards from all across the world, over 160, so far.


The postcards can be anything the sender likes, but my listed preference are of landscape, costumes, crafts, birds, the sky, and something a little different, but used in many cultures, the umbrella. 


I now have a little collection of umbrella postcards and another of birds. Many Postcrossers send pictures of their landscape, native costumes or crafts. Some send a postcard they find funny or poignant. Everyone writes a little something on the card--sometimes a lovely note, sometimes a simple greeting. Any postcard is a welcome sight in  my mailbox. 


When my postcard arrives at its distant destination my address is given to another Postcrosser somewhere else in the world. I never get a postcard back from the person who sent it, unless we agree upon an exchange or become pen pals. The point of Postcrossing is to connect the world on a small scale and with a postcard you start a chain reaction of kindness and connection, final destination unknown.

Our Day Together


We walked around the lake, what better place to be on a gorgeous fall day? At that elevation, not many leaves were left on the aspens, just one tree in 10,000 had its golden curls.  The water went from choppy from the cold wind, to clear as glass in about 3 1/2 seconds.  


After the lake we drove up and over the mountain down into Park City and, because the day was clear (thank you breeze), we stopped to see the view from the top of the pass. We could see all the way to the Uinta mountains and the low hanging clouds that always dot their skies. 


The day was fine, the weather warm and gentle, one of the last amazing fall days we'll have this year. The weather has turned towards the cool, even the cold, as a storm approaches and the skies cover with gray. We enjoyed our beautiful day together, with time to talk, time to walk, and time to laugh.  We know there will be many more perfect days, but for now, we head back to work, to face the chill of coming weather, and to find scraps of evening time to spend together. This is life. 

Five Things About My Weekend


1. Friday counts as part of the weekend (in my estimation) and the rain and thunderstorms that day were impressive and exciting. My view, as I returned from lunch, was of a huge black cloud full of lightning and thunder. I tried numerous times to capture the lighting, but it evaded my camera lens. 


2. Saturday, just as I was driving away from the library, and heading to dinner with a friend, the tiniest part-arc of a rainbow appear at the mouth of Big Cottonwood Canyon. You can see I was stopped at a red light and not snapping pictures whilst operating my car. This little bit of rainbow delighted me and I, for once, I was happy to stop at the light. 

3. I have no picture to share for number three, but the the churros I had for dessert, following a delicious taco dinner, were wonderful. I ate them before I remembered to take a picture, but the crunchy outside and soft warm center (dusted with sugar and cinnamon, dipped in whipped cream and/or chocolate) created a mouth full of joy. 

Do not worry, I am not dead or ill as the next photo might suggest.


4. I had a bit of a disaster while trying to fill one of my fountain pens. I wanted the last drop of ink from the bottle and ended up squirting it all over my hands, my face, and my shirt. I am a novice fountain pen owner (my pens belonged to Smith's mother) and I am trying to get the hang of filling cartridges and converters. I am grateful the ink washed out of everything except my fingernails (which will be clear of blue soon enough). 


5. Sunday dawned clear and cool, with beautiful blue skies and entertaining clouds. Smith had the day off (yay!) and after breakfast, we took a walk, taking time for a little photo shoot (which you'll see later in the week). Because we had most of the day together, we were able to take advantage of the beautiful day and spend time on the patio, grilling dinner and making the most of our day. 

How did your weekend go? Did you have a lovely one whether rained on or no? 

After the Fact

Well, since all the cool kids did it, I decided to print off a BOTNS Summer Bingo card and see how I did...after the fact. 

The Xs cross through a subject I wouldn't have read given the chance. A few squares are left blank as not one of the 20 books I read came close to fitting in a squaret. (Although if I'd had this card earlier, I might have tried.) Some books I moved just to get a Bingo and I think that's fair. In the end, that trick gave me two Bingos.  In full disclosure, I did cheat by refreshing the card until I had a one that gave me a chance and I think that's fair, too. My guess is few of you took the first card you were handed, right? 

My favorite books of all that I read this summer were the 4 books by Elena Ferrante, known as the Neapolitan novels.  If you decide to read even one, you must read all 4, as they only get better with each story. The last one, recently published, was the best of all! 

If you have any questions about the books I've read I'll answer them and I'd love to know what your favorite book of the summer was, Bingo or no! 

A Week in the Life

Hallo Blog Friends-

The last two weeks, as well as the week ahead, have been overly busy both day and night. Decidedly, chronicling is not my forte and I have been negligent in keeping up with photos and/or words. 

Last week Smith and I went to one of the last Bees games, courtesy of Susan who was away on an amazing adventure. We had a great time watching our team lose. Near the beginning of the game the opposing teams pitcher didn't like the mound and it took over 15 minutes to fix his problem and add a new pitching rubber.  How many Iowa Cubs does it take to fix a pitching mound? Ah well, we had a good time regardless of our 8-2 loss. 


The next night we had dinner with my sister, Jana, who is marrying her partner, Kaylee next week. I will do my best to take picture of the brides, as I think they will be beautiful together. We're looking forward to welcoming Kaylee to our family.

The skies have been smoky, which creates a pall of yellow over the skies. Some nights the sunsets are spectaular colors of red and orange, but most of the time, at least where we sit, the skies are a ghastly haze of gray and yellow. We're hoping for a south wind to help clear the air. 


Sunday I did something you'll never believe (I barely believe it myself), I finished AND BLOCKED my TTT Mystery Shawl (which Kirsten has renamed Liz Christy). Liz was a "gorilla" community gardener in NYC and the shawl could not have a better name (imo).  

I'm busy, and happy, and having a great time away from you all and hope you're having a great time celebrating the last month of your summer, too. 

Moments In Time


Watching...the sky. Always the sky. July was cooler than normal and much enjoyed by everyone after June's excessive heat. It looks as if August is keeping up the trend and summer is starting to bend to falls sway. I'm not ready to give it up and hope we have more days of warmth and sun ahead.

Reading...I've spent more time this summer reading than I have knitting or sewing. You can see a list of my recent reads on the side bar.  The Bees, Sleeping with Pancho Villa, and the "Neapolitan Novels"  of Elena Ferrante to name just a few and I'm enjoying a little mystery reading by making my way through the Shetland Series by Ann Cleeves. 

Knitting...I am now on the side knit edging of the mystery shawl and almost half way through the 97 repeats. This feels like a huge accomplishment!

Listening to...podcasts, music, and books, depending on my mood. I just started listening to "The Seams" a podcast by Jacki Lyden. Some of you Fashionista's may get a kick out of it. I've been listening to more music than books or talking podcasts. Currently, I'm into Jason Isbell and Courtney Barnett.

Drinking...cold white wine, cold black tea, and sipping a whiskey when the mood strikes. produce. Anyone want zucchini? We're still waiting for the tomatoes to ripen and I have a hunch they'll all come at once. SEE IN PERSON Jason Isbell on Friday night! We're stepping out of our comfort zone and going to see a live concert. I'm not even sure what to do with myself. Maybe dye my hair blue? (Oh wait, I did that.)


Itching to...finish the beading on my AC T. The front beading is nearly finished and I'm sewing around the motifs on the back. After seeing Vicki's amazing dress I am re-inspired. I wish my fingers moved as quickly and surely has hers do. jazz collect. Long story short, I thought it was lost, but a few days ago, Smith found the box in the back of a closet (one of the closets he has stuffed full). He brought it to me the morning after the evening jazz was dropped from our public radio station. I was ecstatic to have it in my possession. I have been going through it disc by disc, prioritizing discs for burning, and general feeling euphoric the discs were found.

Delighted by...having my own jazz "station". I miss the nighttime jazz more than I thought I would.

Delighted blue hair and my new physical therapist. He is the best!

Celebrating...a summer that is still here and needs to be enjoyed!

In My Office

Another week with lack of blog posts cannot and shall not be. I am here, still trying to keep all the balls in the air. The office seems to be a place of urgencies, which leaves me ready to collapse at the end of the day. However, there is always something going on in the evenings and collapsing is not on the agenda.

Why oh why, is it I cannot pick up my phone and snap and picture?? This lack of thinking is why I haven't joined something like 365 (and no--it would not spur me on).  I am going to try my best to see if I can create something from "nothing". 


This is how I personalize my work space. The tray under one of my computer monitors holds a few oddments; washi tape (which I have never used but have/had intentions of doing so), a sand dollar from Whidbey Island, WA, and a schedule of pay-dates (very important dates to know). The assortment of "sign here" stickies are used on occasion, but always at the ready.


On the wall of my desk is a sticky note from Smith, which he long ago tucked into my lunch box.  When I happen to glance up and see it I take it as a bit of encouragement to get through the day. Not only do I use a boatload of sticky notes in the office, they are our #1 mode of communication when we're passing in the night.  The tea mug I bought at my favorite tea shop sits atop a coaster that was a gift from Vicki and it reminds me of all my faraway friends who are there silently sending encouragement, too. 

Aprils end

One of my favorite things on the desk is a beautiful calendar by which I watch the days pass.  Each monthly scenes is peaceful and season specific. I love turning the page on a new month and seeing a new beautiful landscape (soon!).

My work day is full of paperwork and staring at a computer screen (or two), but having a few dear things near me gives me a feeling of home.  I may as well make my space my own. 

Something New

Welcome to the new Zeneedle! Thanks to the most awesome Vicki for all the hard work in making the header look more like mine! I love it and love the new look Typepad's Nimble design has made possible. There may be some tweaking, but I'm excited about the new look and hope you are, too.

Did you know it was my 11th Bloggiversary the beginning of this month? I just skipped right over it, but now there is need of celebration, don't you think? I think I'll tell you Three Things About Me Right Now. Exciting, eh? 


1. I'm a shaggy dog in need of a haircut and I'm wondering if I need a change. Not short, just different. Any suggestions? 


2. I'm trying out my artistic skills by doodling and drawing, follow the steps on this blog. She has great ideas and some easy techniques, although, I think she makes everything look easy. 


3. I'm loving the weather (so sorry my Eastern friends!) and spending time in the garden walking the labyrinth. It's going to be a fabulous weekend.  

Messed Up

This post is brought to you by the demise of my iPod. By the end of the day I'll have one, but right now, I do not have it in hand. I love(d) that device. I downloaded podcasts, books, and music, plus used it for a pedometer, and a clock. 

Sadly, I am not vigilant about checking the pockets of my pants before tossing them in the laundry and, know the rest of the story. I didn't even realized what I'd done until I saw it in the bottom of the washer. (!!!!!!!!!)

The heartbreak, the self-anger, the sorrow, the acceptance...all emotions ran through me just about as fast as you read that sentence. All this happened about an hour before the Apple store closed and I came thisclose to running to the mall. I restrained myself, but by morning I knew I could not live without my precious.


Yesterday my plan was to go right after work and buy a new one, but Smith had the day off and took pity on me. I wouldn't have thought of taking my poor deceased beautiful red iPod with me, but Smith did, and he was able to buy a replacement, new but without packaging and with only a limited warranty for $75. This made me about as happy as can be! Now I can listen to my books and podcasts without being tethered to the computer.

However, there is one good thing happened when I pulled the pants from the dryer. A ten dollar bill fell out onto the floor and I don't know if it was from my pocket or Smith's (my guess would be mine), but it went towards my new red friend.

I won't swear I'll never wash anything I shouldn't again, and I won't swear I'll check my pants pockets every load (I try, but you know how it goes), but I will do my best to be more vigilant.