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. 

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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. 

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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.

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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. 

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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

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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.

Eating...garden produce. Anyone want zucchini? We're still waiting for the tomatoes to ripen and I have a hunch they'll all come at once.

Planning...to 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.)

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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.

Organizing...my 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 by...my 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". 

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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.

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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. 

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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? 

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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? 

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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. 

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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, now...you 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.

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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.


Birthday Weekending

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Have you ever heard of a glyptodon? Well, I hadn't either, but it's a very mega relative of the mammal we call the armadillo. Smith and I went to the Natural History Museum and visited the Extreme Mammal exhibit and, let me assure you, it will bring out your internal kid. I wan't even sure it was possible for me to curl up that small, but I did! Not bad for a 65 year old, eh? 

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You may remember Saturday was the Pi Day of the Century. Thanks to my sister, Neena, I have the T-shirt to prove it. What you may not know, is it was also my birthday! I had a wonderful weekend with a whole boatful of love coming my way. I feel very grateful to have so many wonderful people in my life--my friends and family, who make me feel nourished, loved, and full of joy. I open my heart and hope to pass on the love and joy to others. 


What's Happening Now

Watching ...House of Cards. I losing interest in Frank and his wife and would rather watch the last episode of Downton....hopefully tonight.

Reading ...The Heart is A Lonely Hunter, I was hooked after reading the first page. I haven't decided on my next audio book.

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Knitting ...I'm having a bit of a redux, as I bought a lovely kit of Zen Yarn Garden in the Monument Valley Series. What else would I do with three complimentary colors, except reknit my favorite shawl, Germinate

Dreading ....I'm trying to not dial up the anxiety level, so I dread not.

Listening to... Jazz on the NPR website because they no longer podcast the shows. This does not make me happy, NPR!

Thinking about ...completely redoing the look of my blog. But, if the red umbrella goes, it won't come back and that stops me in my tracks.

Celebrating ...next week, my birthday.

Planning ...be outdoors in the extra light of day. Hurray for DST!

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Itching to ...finish outlining of the petals on my Alabama Chanin T-shirt and start to cut (and bead). 

Drinking ...The last of my Royal Golden Safari tea from TeaZaanti. I need to find a new favorite and Hong Shui or Gin Shan Creme are running neck and neck.

Needing to ...try out some of the crafting materials I purchased. Needing to carve out the time to do.

Organizing ...I still haven't tackled the pantry (after months and months of wanting to do so).

Inspired by ...Beverly and Maryse who have been sharing their artwork on Instagram. And, by Kym who is sharing her artistic pursuits on her blog.

Delighted by ...The snow! Any precipitation that comes to the very dry West is welcome, although, spring is returning this weekend.


In the Sun

In the center of our community garden is one of only 18 known labyrinths in Utah. Being in the garden has a calming effect on me, but  when I walk the path of the labyrinth, a silent prayer of love flows from my heart. I am not a believer in any religious tradition and I pray in my own way. Walking the labyrinth opens my heart and fills my spirit with calm. 

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You can see from my shadow, we had a weekend of sun. Smith and I spent Saturday together, going out for breakfast and then running errands. I find errands are more fun when you have company. Later in the afternoon Smith worked on the greenhouse (of course!) and I walked the labyrinth and the pathways of the garden. 

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Sunday, while Smith was working, I stopped by the monthly Wasatch Market to buy a loaf of GF bread. A tamale booth caught my eye and after talking to the owner, and after having a taste of the chicken tamale, I decided to try a mole tamale for lunch. It was delicious, but the very best part was sitting in at a picnic table to enjoy the warmth of the sun. (I am an idiot and do not remember the name of the vendor, but I will be back next month to buy more tamales and make sure I note their name.)

The sun is now hidden behind gray once again and a storm, with minimal rain, is headed our way.  Sadly, the next 7 days have temperatures in the 50s...even during the storm. I'm not one to complain about warm weather, but it would be nice to have a little snow, at least in the mountains. February, I'm happy to see you, but please bring us some snow. 

So friends, how was your weekend?  


Weekend Milestone

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Yesterday, Smith and I celebrated our 35th anniversary by going to our favorite sushi place for dinner. As is my usual MO, I took no pictures, as apparently, I live only in moments I never remember to share. 

For 35 years Smith has put up with my foibles, insecurities, and quirks, and I feel very lucky he's willing to do so. We've lived in this house for almost all of our married years and I can't imagine leaving it, although I would like to make a few changes in decor. 

In 1980 I believed in perms (had to have that full curly head of hair everyone else). In 1980 I didn't believe in sunblock, and those lily white arms are now speckled with spots. In 1980 I felt young and beautiful, and now, I feel much older, still beautiful, perhaps. While I've heard it said age brings wisdom, I'm not sure I've become any wiser, unless that means being smart enough to stay married to this wonderful man for 35th years.  

 


Working The List

I'm not sure anyone is around on this long winter weekend, but let's get back into this game of blogging with a review of my list of intentions. Even though it's only been a couple of weeks I think I'm doing well.

Why not start at the top with #1: Friday night I did a little shopping and picked up a few things needed to do my own fancy manicure (ala Claudia). Saturday, in preparation for a clear Sunday morning, I did all the laundry and cooking that needed to be done. Sunday, I sat down and went through each step needed to create my beautiful new manicure and ended up with a not-too-bad job of blue nails.

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However, I did freak out not think the look was quite "me", so I took the color off and I'm now sporting only a clear coat on my nails. Claudia suggests a more subtle color until my eyes get used to seeing something on the nails.

Second on the list: As to writing notes, I have been doing just that almost every day. I write to friends or family and send notes or cards, plus I also send out postcards via Postcrossing. It's been great to see postcards in my mailbox from the far reaches of the globe and to send out picture postcards of the beautiful Salt Lake Valley.

The third: Reading, I am reading, reading, reading and I've already finished 5 books for the year. The Miniaturist is one many of you will enjoy if you're a fan of historical fiction. Euphoria was just ok, but I enjoyed Bright Wings and American Pastoral. I've started The Sparrow, which may end of being my favorite read so far this year.

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Four: I have been falling short on moving my body, as the weather has been wet and wetter, then inverted and miserable. The morning we were fogged in, I walked around my half mile circle a couple of times (photos were the motivator). So, I've made plenty of excuses and, from now on, I plan to get my move on everyday.

A Fifth: As to drink more tea, I am not falling behind on this intention and  have had a chance to meet up with a couple of friends. This is my favorite of all my intentions for the year.

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Six: I may not be able to grow many veggies at the moment, but we are having a good time going through catalogs. Orders are being placed and lists are being made for future orders. The gardening time gets closer each day and within weeks we could be using Smith's new greenhouse.

(Yes, he and his buddies have been building a community greenhouse during this mild winter). Mild winters are not good for garden season, however, as I see a bug infested year.

7th: Hugs, hugs, hugs. Thank you for accepting my hugs and for giving them back. You can count on me for a hug any time. I'm all about giving people hugs, but only if they don't have a cold. Too many people I know are under the weather.

Eight: I'm smiling, or trying to keep smiling during the cold, wet, crummy weather we're having. BUT, I say "Thank You" every chance I get!

Number Nine: Every day I try to do a little something on one of my projects, but some days there just isn't time. Every stitch I make moves me closer to a finished  project and it also calms the mind. It's the calming I need, as my days have been busy.

And, as for The Tenth: Trying to be more me, accept me, well, that's the hardest of all the intentions. I am working on me every day.

So, how have you been during my little blog break? I hope your intentions have been going well and that you've stayed healthy.