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April 28, 2009

Last night's sunset

I got stuck in a thunderstorm on the way back from my errands yesterday and managed to make it home in time for this:

Tonight's sky after the thunderstorm

I stood on my porch and pointed the camera to the west, above the tree line. Perhaps I can handle storms when there's a sunset like this afterward.

April 26, 2009

Halfway point for the Ripple

I've passed the halfway point for my crocheted Ripple afghan, so I'll share these progress photos -- probably the last ones you'll see until I'm finished. I've created a set on Flickr so you can see more about the progression of colors in the Ripple. The stripes are random and selected based on the colors I bought initially and filled in with new colors as I buy one ball at a time.

Ripples crocheted - a closer shot

I'll let you in on a secret . . . I'm not totally in love with some of the color combinations that have "happened." The combinations I love the most are the ones I've had help with via Flickr. But overall, I love the afghan itself. I love crocheting it and I'm excited every time I get to work on it. For those of you who have asked about the yarn and colors. I'm using Cascade 220 Superwash. I think it's a really good yarn choice for this project. I've listed the colors on my Ravelry project page. The book in which the pattern appears is 200 Ripple Stitch Patterns: Exciting Patterns to Knit & Crochet for Afghans, Blankets & Throws, by Jan Eaton.

There are patterns for both knit and crochet ripples. Knit patterns are on the left pages and crochet patterns are on the right. There are no diagrams, but the instructions are straightforward and the photos are plentiful.

The Ripple afghan on April 22, 2009

And, yes, I still knit. But now that I can crochet, there are yarns I might have overlooked before that would be more enjoyable for me as crochet projects. Cottons and cotton blends, for instance, are just easier on my hands with a crochet hook -- and the results look better. While I'm happily hooking and reading blogs, I've added a few crochet blogs to the mix. I was reading Kim Werker's last night and absolutely loved it. This entry: "Where are the Crochet Bloggers?" was especially interesting to me. If you're a blogger, please read it -- even if you don't crochet.

April 21, 2009

Soon unveiling something new

I'll soon be unveiling something new -- something which will bring this blog back to a knitting (and occasionally, crocheting) focus.

Here's a hint:

"Penny" copyright 1946 John H. Howell, Jr.

Note: This is a photo that my dad shot in the mid- to late-1940's. The only note on the photo was "Penny," so I assume it's her name.

April 13, 2009

I've had a hard time smiling today

I've had a hard time smiling today, so I decided to go through my Flickr photostream to find old family photos. It worked. I smiled:

My mom and sisters sometime in the early Sixties

My mom had this photo taken sometime in the early 60's for my dad who was stationed somewhere in the Pacific. She wrote a note on the back and mentioned how much she was enjoying the car and that she liked this picture of herself and their two daughters. My little sister and I came along a few years after this photo was taken. It would have been interesting to be part of this family in the photo -- having a younger, somewhat happier and less-stressed mom and getting to enjoy more time in southern California. I think it's probably the one place that BOTH my parents enjoyed.

What the photo triggered is something I needed to see and to know -- I'm giving myself some grace and relieving myself of some of my own absurd expectations. I'm acknowledging that change doesn't happen overnight. Sometimes it doesn't happen at all. I remember when I figured this out years ago, in a different context, and it was such an epiphany -- to be OKAY with things the way they are and to find ways to thrive and be happy -- that is, just make the assumption that while the situation won't change, my attitude about it can.

Crocheting has given me much JOY in the past few weeks. I'm 29 stripes into the 60 it will take for me to consider the blanket finished:

Ripple Jr. (27 Stripes)
(click the photo to see it larger on Flickr)

It's so much easier to find joy when you're actively seeking it.

April 06, 2009

Next steps

My new potted Rosemary

It may be when we no longer know what to do, we have come to our real work.
And that when we no longer know which way to go, we have begun our real journey.

Wendell Berry