WIP Wednesday: 44/52

Greetings from Iowa, the land that reelected a white supremacist yesterday. I am appalled with the results of that race. I am thankful that the three other house seats in Iowa went to candidates that embrace diversity.

I’ve been stress knitting (and eating) over the election this week. I’m on the last repeat of the Nightshift shawl. I love this pattern. It’s pretty mindless knitting, but it is incredibly beautiful. It is fun to knit and it will be fun to wear. When I saw the pattern I knew that I had to make it. I would not be surprised if I make another one to give away. It is so much fun to knit I would like to make it twice.20181107_1424194182750838183273552.jpg

I hope you got some good knitting in this week!

Duh

I’ve spent four years as a stay at home mom. 90% of that time I’ve been really bad about remembering the things I want to try to do. I have heard great things about the Grimes Community Center, but I never think of it on a day that it is open. I want to take the yoga class at the Y, but I never remember it that day.

I had an A Ha moment last weekend when I realized I could just make a calendar with all of the possibilities for each day on it. Now if we don’t have plans when we wake up I can look at the calendar and find an activity. I hope this will get me to branch out more. I also hope it will get me to the Y more often.20181105_1429405457887113247483260.jpgI find that most of my A Ha! moments are closer to Well, Duh moments. I don’t care what they are as long as they make life easier.

Predictable

A few weeks ago I told you how predictable I am when it comes to picking out colors for sweaters. It is even worse than I thought.

Here’s the sweater I just finished:20181103_0930262049686524622183208.jpgHere’s the Dove sweater I finished last year: 20181103_0930396852435809362364307.jpg

I have two sweaters that are the same color. Both are knit bottom up. Both have raglan sleeves. Both were Craftsy kits. Both yarns were selected because “the color is so bright and unlike any of my other sweaters.”20181103_093053450888782327311164.jpgSo help me, if I buy yarn this color for another sweater I am going to give up knitting.

October Reads and November Book Goals

I spent a lot of October resisting social activities so I could spend more time reading. It was worth it. I finished 10 books in October, many of which were excellent.

Dying Up Loose Ends by Maggie Sefton. I started this knitting murder mystery series over 10 years ago. I’ve read all 16 books, and if she writes more I’m sure I’ll read them. That being said – good lord this is a TERRIBLE BOOK. It is not written well. At all. The only reason to read this book is because you have read 15 other books in the series and want to see if the writing will get even worse. I give this book 0 out of 5 stars.

Killers of the Flower Moon: The Osage Murders and the Birth of the FBI by David Grann. This book had been on my to read list for a long time. I’m glad I finally took the time to read it because it is excellent. It is a true story of a series of murders of Osage Indians in Oklahoma. It reads like a novel…a very sad novel. I give this book 5 out of 5 stars.

The Lost Art of Mixing by Erica Bauermeister. This is the sequel to the School of Essential Ingredients. Like the first book, each chapter tells the story of a different character. All of the characters are connected to the same restaurant.  I enjoyed the book, just not as much as I liked the first book. If you are in the mood for something light, this is not a bad choice. I give this book 3 out of 5 stars.

How to Break up With Your Phone by Catherine Price. This book changed my relationship with my phone. It also helped me become a better mom, friend, and wife. If you have a smart phone you should read this book. I cannot recommend this book, and the meaningful changes that come from following the program, enough. I give this book 5 out of 5 stars.

The Hearts Invisible Furies by John Boyne. This is a damn good book (Susan, you really need to read this one). This is the kind of book that makes you angry if you have to do something other than read it.  I read the last 300 pages in a day because I was leaving town the next day and I knew I would resent talking to my friends if I hadn’t finished it. This book is about a gay man growing up in post World War II Ireland. It follows him from the 1940s to today. It is incredibly beautiful in its sadness. I give this book 6 out of 5 stars. It’s my blog, I can break the rating system if I want.

Winter In Paradise by Elin Hilderbrand. This book doesn’t take much thinking, but it is fun. It’s about a woman who discovers after her husband’s death that their marriage wasn’t perfect. Most of the book takes place in St. John’s, so I spent a lot of the book daydreaming about going on a beach vacation. It is the first book in a trilogy, and I’ll be reading the next two books. I give this book 3 out of 5 stars.

I Am Malala: The Girl Who Stood Up for Education and Was Shot By the Taliban by Malala Yousafzai. Malala is an incredible woman. That being said, maybe 15 year olds should limit their memoirs to about 150 pages. She has lived a lot, but not enough to make over 300 pages interesting. I probably would have been better off with the young readers version. I give this book 2 out of 5 stars.

It Takes Two: Our Story by Jonathan and Drew Scott. This book was fine. I like the Scott brothers. I can’t believe I picked this up at the library. I am embarrassed to admit that I read it. I give this book 2 out of 5 stars.

Memoirs of an Imaginary Friend by Matthew Dicks. This book had such an interesting premise – it is written from the perspective of an autistic child’s imaginary friend. It was a good story, about a child in a dangerous situation. The ending was so intense I couldn’t wind down to fall asleep for hours after finishing this one. I give this book 3 out of 5 stars.

Christmas at the Little Knitting Box by Helen Rolfe. A Christmas romance book set in a knitting store. It is exactly what you would expect. I will probably be reading a lot of these as we head in to the Christmas season. I give this book 2 out of 5 stars.

My book shelf for November is dense. In addition to what is pictured I’ll probably read a few Christmas novels on my kindle.20181102_1158184319474307920189573.jpg

What did you read last month? Is there anything I should add to my pile?

WIP Wednesday: 43/52

Happy Halloween! It’s spooky how much knitting I’ve completed this week.

I blocked my Zadie Sweater. The bottom is rolling a bit. As I was knitting it I thought there wasn’t enough garter to keep it from rolling. I was right. I should have listened to my gut and adjusted the pattern. Other than that, I like the sweater a lot. It’s cozy and casual. I will wear it a lot.20181031_1345391764708635149838383.jpgI finished the gusset on the first sock of my current sock project. These are slow going, but when I actually pick them up to work on them they go fast. Funny how that works.20181031_1329258385867915150015255.jpgThe project that I can’t stop working on this week is Nightshift by Andrea Mowry. I find mosaic color work addictive. Most of the yarn I’m using is leftover from Mary-Claire’s Scrap Yarn Shawl Knock Off. As I knit the shawl I’m thinking about her, which makes knitting it even more delightful. I’m suffering from the delusion that often comes with shawls that grow wider as you knit them – I think I’ll be able to finish this in a week. I know that is unlikely, but I can dream.20181031_1330364299201495249290190.jpg

In non-knitting news, last night was Beggar’s Night in Des Moines. Des Moines has a weird tradition where kids trick or treat the night before Halloween. I did not grow up with the tradition and find it annoying, because it makes Halloween a bit of a let down for the kids. Stupid tradition or not, the kids were excited to trick or treat. 20181030_1805092335573696556768027.jpgI hope you get a spooky amount of knitting done this week too!