At 12 o'clock it was time to resume today's sourdough quest. As you can see, the sponge I'd started seven hours earlier (yes, it was that early) had risen and was nice and bubbly.
The next step was to stir in 1 tsp. sugar, 1 tsp. salt, and 1.5 cups flour followed by 15 minutes of hand kneading. I love hand kneading. :) My lovely, slightly-sour-smelling dough rose in a lightly greased bowl in our family room which stays nice and warm due to our wood stove. If I didn't have a fire going, I'd have put the dough in the oven with the light on to rise.
After a 2nd rising time - 2.5 hours, the dough is kneaded for about a minute, then shaped into a loaf by rolling it back and forth until it looks like this:
A 3rd rising time of 1.5 hours, and we're almost done. :) I scored the top with a really sharp knife and into the oven it went (preheated to 400 degrees) for about 30 minutes. I'm keeping my fingers crossed - so far, so good!