Surviving the worst of summer

Good morning and happy Saturday! Have you had enough rain? Seriously, it seems like every day over the last couple of weeks has been gray, wet, and dreary. If it wasn’t raining, it was so hot and humid that I was soaked in my own sweat the moment I stepped outside, so I tried not to go out unless it was absolutely necessary. Most of the time the window AC units and fans we use in the most necessary rooms did fine but they struggled on the hottest days. The living room especially since it gets sun all afternoon and evening.

Continue reading “Surviving the worst of summer”

It’s been a while

Good morning and happy Saturday! The calendar may say it starts on the 20th, but summer is here. At least for the next few days. I have plenty of outside work to accomplish this weekend but I am limiting it to the morning hours with a strict noon cutoff time. Earlier if I can help it. I’ll stay inside where it’s cool and comfortable and continue working on some indoor endeavors.

I have not spun any substantial amount of yarn in over a year. My Polonaise has sat basically unused in my craft room since last spring. What little I have spun has been more or less sampling a few things on various spindles. I was looking forward to the Men’s Spring Knitting Retreat as an opportunity to start a new spinning project, but start it a few steps before the actual spinning.

Continue reading “It’s been a while”

MSKR 2021 – we needed this!

Good morning and happy Saturday! Ready for summer? It’s a little after 4AM here this morning and the heat has kicked on because it’s only 43 degrees outside and it barely made it above 50 all day yesterday. Add in the rain, and the damp chill seems to penetrate everything and settle right in down to my bones. It doesn’t take much either. I always say it doesn’t matter what the outside or inside temperature is, I won’t be warm until June.

Continue reading “MSKR 2021 – we needed this!”

MSKR 2021 – It’s really happening!

Good morning and happy Saturday! Having a good spring so far? I have some huge projects going on here so I’m alternately wishing for both dry and sunny days as well as the wet days. I’ll have more on the things I have been working on here at home soon.

By the end of March or mid-April of last year it became clear that COVID was going to cause us to cancel the annual Men’s Spring Knitting Retreat. The guys who signed up for the retreat in January were all very understanding of the situation but were devastated nonetheless. All were given the option of requesting a full refund or transferring their registration to either the fall knitting retreat in September or the 2021 spring retreat. Neither of which we were certain would be able to take place. Luckily, we were able to have the fall retreat in September, but we had to significantly reduce the number of attendees and follow a number of other safety and sanitation requirements as per state guidelines.

Our NEMFKR 2020 Group Photo

Ultimately, we had about half the number of attendees that we were allowed to have under the pandemic related restrictions, but that was okay with us. This was the FIRST men’s knitting retreat to take place since the beginning of the pandemic and it was a great opportunity for the venue to work out the new processes and guidelines for the safety of their guests for all the programs and events they host. For us, we were ready to do anything just to be able to gather together and engage in the fiber crafts we love, and offer each other the same nurturing support, encouragement, and inclusiveness that these retreats have become known for.

Now, in a little less than two weeks, 26 men will gather at Easton Mountain for the 2021 Men’s Spring Knitting Retreat and to say we are excited is definitely an understatement. Our number of attendees is a little over half compared to past spring retreats because of restrictions still in place, but that is still okay. The registration that usually opens in January for this retreat didn’t because we basically had enough guys transferring in from last year to fill it, and they all are or will be fully vaccinated before the retreat begins. We still have some safety and sanitation rules to follow and that’s okay. We are grateful that we can even gather together at all. I will most certainly have more to write about this retreat after it has taken place.

In other Men’s Knitting Retreat news, registration for the 2021 North East Men’s Fall Knitting Retreat is opening up this morning at 11:00 AM Eastern Time. Everyone on the mailing list for retreat news and updates will get an email when registration goes live with a link to sign up and make a deposit. If you’re not already on the mailing list but would like to be so you can get notifications of future men’s knitting retreats around the country, send an email to contact@mensknittingretreat.com and ask to be added to the mailing list.

In other news, I am going to my first dog show since 2019 this weekend! Sure, Jade has travelled the country this past fall and winter with her handler doing a number of shows, but not me. I have missed these events too. There will still be COVID related restrictions and safety/sanitation rules in place, but I am happy to abide by them. Really, I can’t imagine why anyone wouldn’t. I want other people to be safe and healthy just as much as I want those things for me.

That’s all for this morning. I have to do both girls’ nails and give Jade a bath and take care of a number of other things here around the house before I head off to New Jersey this afternoon. Have a great weekend and a Happy Mother’s Day!

Procrastination

Good morning and happy Saturday! I am so ready for spring. It has been a long winter in this small house working from home most of the week with dogs that can’t get outside long enough to get a proper tiring run. The recent warm weather has reminded me again of the downside of early spring. Moop. Part mud, part dog poop, and it’s everywhere outside!

A friend asked a general question on Facebook recently. Do you struggle with procrastination? My answer. No. I’m quite good at it.

Current proof: my green hat project. It has been sitting on the table in my craft room like this for a few weeks now. Well, not quite like this. It was balled up. I had to open it up to take the picture.

It’s next to me every day, all day, while I sit in that room at the table I set up for work, and underneath the violin on the wall that I take down to practice every day. Not having much of anywhere to go to even need a hat could be part of the reason I felt no rush to finish it. Having such a poor track record with personal project deadlines that I no longer bother trying to set them is still the biggest factor. It’s easy to lose track of how much time you have been working (or not working) on a project when it has no time requirements. 

This hat is on my agenda to complete this morning. It’s early and it’s quiet. The dogs have eaten and gone back to sleep. I won’t see them or Michael for at least a couple more hours. A good chunk of my day will be spent in the basement. I’m close to having space to use this loom and in anticipation of that, I’m going to clean up the parts and assemble it here where I have the space and the light to do so.

 

There are other things that I’ve been working on in anticipation of using this loom too. I’ll have more to write about those when I get closer to being able to use it. When will that be? Whenever it happens. I’m not even going to try and set a a deadline.

Have a great weekend! 

Oh, Bernie Where Art Thou?

Good morning and happy Saturday! What a fantastic week it’s been, huh? Less than three weeks ago the nation’s Capitol was being stormed by homegrown terrorists fed on hate and lies by the former occupant of the Oval Office and his seditious supporters in an insurrection that left a Capitol Police officer dead. Don’t ever forget that, and don’t ever let the lying traitors who amplified the hate and lies and the calls to overturn a fair election by any means necessary forget that they’re responsible. There needs to be accountability for that. Continue reading “Oh, Bernie Where Art Thou?”

On the road again…

Good morning and happy Saturday! Yes, happy. This was an indisputably shitty week, but it ended on a high note with Twitter and Google taking a firm stance against the lies and hate propagated by the shitbag in the Oval Office and his cult of terrorist followers. If we all shine more light there will be fewer places the cockroaches have to hide.

I took a drive with Jade on Wednesday to meet up with her handler so she could go out for several more weeks of shows. Continue reading “On the road again…”

Finding brightness in an otherwise dark year

Good morning and happy Saturday! 2020 is finally over and like pretty much everyone, I am really glad for that. It hasn’t been a good year. Not for anyone. Especially not for the more than 300,000 Americans who didn’t get to see the year’s end because of COVID. 

That I am even able to sit here and reflect on the past year and find any good in it is a privilege that too many people will never know. We are both still alive, we are both still employed, we are still in our home, and we are not drowning in debt. Continue reading “Finding brightness in an otherwise dark year”

It’s Jade’s Turn

Good morning and Happy Halloween! It will be an interesting night. We are never sure from one year to the next what our volume of trick-or-treaters will be. We buy the same amount of candy every year and I hoard the peanut butter cups and hand out the rest. I think we handed out everything (except those peanut butter cups) only once and I doubt that will happen again this year. I do know that Halloween and trick-or-treating as we have come to know it will be different this year, and that’s okay. I’m just glad it’s happening.
Continue reading “It’s Jade’s Turn”

Rhinebeck Memories

Good morning and happy Saturday! 

For the last week or so Facebook has been reminding me on a daily basis of all the good times I have had with friends over the years at the New York State Sheep and Wool Festival. “Rhinebeck” didn’t happen this year in a physical aspect that we have come to know it, and understandably so. It would be an impossible event to pull off. No amount of safety protocols would be sufficient.

I don’t miss those crowds one bit. I do miss catching up with friends at the festival including many who are vendors. I miss our annual Men’s Knitting Retreat Meet-Up which had been growing in size every year. I miss the smell of fair food and the sound of the Peruvian musicians everywhere you go. I miss the beautiful drive down and back on the Taconic Parkway. Really, this part of New York is absolutely stunning this time of year.  

I think most of all I miss having a house full of guests, even though it was often more people than a small house with one bathroom should ever have. We would retreat back to Albany at the end of a hard day battling rabid fiber fanatics on the fairgrounds to show off our treasures and share a home cooked meal put together by my awesome husband. A large meal too, because that’s how we roll here. There have been turkey dinners, ham dinners, corned beef dinners, and enough beef stew to feed an army, fresh bread, and a bottle of New York wine (usually purchased at the fairgrounds that day) or three. All topped off with something decadent for dessert. 

Rhinebeck was more like Amazon Prime day this year, and everyone bought their goodies from the comfort of their own homes, leaving ours unusually quiet for this time of year. I look forward to being able to fill the house with friends again. 

There is another reason this house is unusually quiet now too, and I’ll have more about that next week. 

Have a great weekend!