Friday, September 19, 2014

when life gets busy...

Up to my ears in canning jars and laundry. Trying to keep up with the garden which is still giving us plenty of green beans, cukes, and carrots -- fall lettuces are on their way!  Monday was our first official homeschool day of the new school year, so I'm really having fun now. The kids are engaged and trying their best to adjust to routine after a long summer break, so I'm thankful. :) 

I'm on a huge learning curve when it comes to getting set up to officially have an employee. Our Daniel will be working one or two days each week with Dan as an electrical apprentice! But... The state makes it so, so easy hard! Argh! I spent half the morning online trying to figure out how to sign up for a "minor work permit endorsement" from the State of Washington. After I was sure I had no idea what I was doing, I logged off and emailed our attorney who agreed to do it for us. So thankful. Thankful for our CPA, too. I could not do this self-employed thing without either one.

Today was sunny and warm  -- the perfect weather for working in the garden! Now that's something I'm good at. :)  Here's what we harvested...

I guess I'll be doing some canning...

And one more thing before I go, so excited that our son-in-law is defending his doctoral thesis tomorrow bringing an end to three years at Oxford and various other locations around Europe. Say a prayer for a solid defense as well as for traveling mercies for him and our daughter as they prepare to move back to the states at the end of the month! So excited, I can barely stand it!

A blessed weekend to you all!


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Wednesday, September 17, 2014

tending my yarn garden...

No, I don't knit while I'm driving. I'm not crazy, you know. :)  Sometimes, though, when a red light is particularly long, or if I'm waiting in the car while someone runs inside the bank or the store, it's rather convenient to pass the time with a little knitting. Do any of you knit in the car? 

I'm on the second skein of my Silverstar Wrap. KPs Hawthorne is delightful to work with; the colorway I'm using is called "the Pearl" -- named after the Pearl District of Portland, OR (that big city an hour away from here).

Reading is mainly dedicated to school books. Our theology book this year is Back to Basics, a book I read years ago shortly after Dan and I started attending a Reformed church. The kids and I are reading a chapter each week and discussing the end-of-chapter questions on Mondays. It amazes me that we're at this level. All my little kid curriculum has been sold other than those gems that I just couldn't part with. Sigh. I'll share other books we're reading this year in future yarn along posts...what books are you using for school this year?

What's on your needles? What have you been reading?
Joining Ginny  :)


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Saturday, September 13, 2014

a rather tardy blogswap show & tell...

Shame on me for being so tardy is sharing the goodies I both sent and received!

What I sent:

Homegrown lavender from my herb garden, an organic cotton knit washcloth with a bar of homemade gardener's hand soap, a bottle of home-brewed vanilla extract, a crocheted flower corsage/brooch, and a hand-made wine cork magnet from a favorite local winery -- the Rusty Grape.

What I received:

If you've never participated in a blog swap, you simply must if you get the opportunity. Slyly spying on someone's blog to learn about them and what they might enjoy receiving is really a bit of fun. And knowing someone is doing the same to you is just as delightful. :)

The package I sent off went to Lady Cordelia who, if you haven't heard, has a gorgeous voice and is a talented singer/songwriter working to release a new cd! I enjoyed my peeks at her blue walls and was inspired by her abundant creativity. The Lord did not see fit to bless me with a voice that can sing on key, nor am I particularly gifted when it comes to words...I'm envious of those who've been gifted to use both, and Cory certainly has. Best wishes to her in her new adventure!

All the lovely things I received came from the equally talented hands of Jaimie who blogs at Knitted Time! Not only did this abundantly-gifted lady send me homemade blueberry jam from her own kitchen (!!), she also sent a gorgeous, petite quilted placemat and a lovely (and handy!) zippered pouch -- both hand-sewn. And if that weren't enough, she tucked in a hand-crocheted washcloth in Seifert colors (perfect!) as well as -- are you ready? -- a skein of KPs Chroma Fingering in "jam jar" which I'm eager to knit into a shawl or wrap for the chilly days to come this fall and winter. Thank you so much, Jaimie!! Your gifts brightened my day as well as my kitchen and knitting basket. :)

Many thanks, too, to Amanda @ Sweet Potato Claire for putting the swap together!

PS: A sheepish invitation to visit my Etsy shop if you're interested in any of the items I sent off...special orders are always welcome! :)


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Thursday, September 11, 2014

Remember this?

I remember turning on the radio in the bathroom when I woke up that morning. And what I heard led me to dash down the stairs to turn on the TV (we were still in town back then and had cable). Both buildings had been hit by then. And we watched them fall.

25 Most Powerful Photos
25 Most Powerful Photos
25 Most Powerful Photos
"As affecting as is the image of terrorists crashing into buildings in an effort to take as many lives as possible, the image of firemen rushing into those same buildings in an effort to save as many lives as possible is more affecting still. The worst that evil can do is no match for the best that love can do.

The horrors of the terrorist attacks on New York and Washington transfixed the nation—and ultimately changed the nation. But the stories of rescue workers, co-workers, family members, friends, and strangers were even more arresting—and in the end, changed us more. Who could ever forget the poignant sacrifices of the men and women who gave their lives while helping to save others? Or those who ignored their own exhaustion, hunger, and safety to continue their desperate search for survivors? Or those who searched the hospitals, the shelters, and the police stations for some word of their brothers, mothers, neighbors, or friends? Or any of the other evidences of love that suddenly transformed New York City and Washington D.C. emblems of enduring faith and courage? Or any of the demonstrations of compassion, generosity, sympathy, and charity from across the entire nation in the weeks and months afterward?

Evil intended to deal a death blow to our national spirit. But love was a healing balm because it always “bears all things and endures all things.” Evil intended to destroy life and smother hope. But love was enlivening and invigorating because it always “abides in hope.” Evil intended to crush freedom under the rubble of tragedy and despair. But love was able to triumph even in this because it always “covers a multitude of sins."

We must never lose sight of the fact that evil is a very present reality in this poor fallen world. But we must never lose heart. Love remains. And love prevails. Love is the greatest force in the world."

~from Love: A Manifesto of Optimism published yesterday on Grantian Florilegium, the blog of Dr. George Grant (and I encourage you to read the rest here!)
Thankful, praying, remembering. When I was a young school girl in Pittsburgh, I remember the fear we had of the communists, of atomic bombs, and how our teacher instructed us to tuck under our desks (as if our desks would've saved us...). We thought they would, I guess, and so we climbed underneath and then played kickball after lunch. We were kids.

Fast forward to today. We live in scary times. What started 13 years ago today continues. But in reality, it's been going on for much longer than just the past 13 years.

And as I sip coffee and type, a warm breeze blows outside my office window. I can hear the delightful sounds of our piano as AnnaLynn's fingers dance over the keys. Daniel is in the garden picking a late crop of raspberries and green beans. Dan is somewhere in the county curing someone's electrical woe.
For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind. ~2 Timothy 1:7
The Lord God is in Heaven. In fact, He sits in the heavens and laughs (Psalm 2)!

And as Dr. Grant so eloquently reminds us, love prevails. :)


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Wednesday, September 10, 2014

a brown baby cardi {tending my yarn garden}

A simple, old-fashioned brown baby cardi that is just about finished...just a couple more rows and some ribbing and then all I need is seven buttons! I love KPs Cotlin! So soft!!

Adam and His Kin: The Lost History of Their Lives and Times by Dr. Ruth Beechick tells the biblical story of man beginning with Adam in a way that blends the scriptural account with science and archeology. Some might have difficulty with the liberties Dr. Beechick has taken, but I love reading how she imagines things might actually have been. :)

Have you started lessons yet? We're still up to our eyeballs in canning/preserving and harvesting the garden as well as finishing outdoor projects, so for us, the official answer is "no." BUT, I have created a rather ambitious stack of good books and cannot wait to dive in. Some we'll be reading aloud as a family, some we'll read aloud just me and the kids, and some will be read independently. We are firm believers in living a life-style of learning with lessons to be gleaned throughout our days whether school is officially in session or not, so no worries that our "school year" hasn't yet started. And not that this has anything to do with yarn along or books, but I just did the math and realized that this will be our family's 23rd year of homeschooling! Amazing! I'll share more about what we'll be doing this year, Lord willing, in an upcoming post.

What's on your needles? What have you been reading?
Joining Ginny :)


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