Wednesday, October 21, 2020

October Notes

Last week the juncos returned. Two red-breasted nuthatches poke safflower seeds from the feeder into the birch bark. I don't know if they are cracking the outer shell or storing seed for winter or both. Chickadees, downy woodpeckers, house finches, and a white breasted nuthatch are also frequent fliers. Sometimes cardinals stop by this feeder. After a night of fitful sleeping, the birds stitch the morning back together. 

I harvested the last of the cherry tomatoes and then I had a roasting party. I froze some and stirred the rest into pizza sauce and topped it all with fresh basil and more tomatoes. How many ways one can eat tomatoes and basil, I wonder. Temperatures have been close to freezing several nights but we haven't had a hard frost yet. 

These two spindles of cormo singles are resting for a few weeks before plying The soft fiber is lovely. I am trying not to spin the dickens out of the fiber, wanting a little less twist in my handspun yarn. Thirty five minutes of spinning on a drop spindle is all my right shoulder will tolerate. Whether I stand or sit to spin, my arm is suspended and performing repetitive motions. It tightens up quickly. So I stretch it out and move on. I'm not anxious to repeat the adhesive capsulitis (frozen shoulder) episode.

I'm chugging along on Kate's shawl and looking forward to sending it to her. This week I've regained the lost knitting. Last night I knit the first garter ridge of edging and it was nice to have the large warm piece on my lap. 

In between I knit on two other projects. The baby sweater is a good project for small amounts of time. I don't have a recipient in mind and might donate this sweater. I love knitting from scraps as much as I love eating tomatoes and basil. Good thing on both accounts.  

I have added some cable repeats to the Easy Folded Poncho. Both the shawl and the poncho are peaceful knits, very essential for these days. 

In reading notes, I am almost finished with City of Girls by Elizabeth Gilbert. I'm not sure what my verdict is on the novel. Female sexuality plays a big part in the story and at times it seems excessive. There are some wonderfully strong, funny, resilient women characters. Relationships between these very human characters, with strengths as well as flaws, are well written. I wish more of the story focused on the main character in later middle and old age. 

The Tooth Witch, the story of how a tooth witch retired and a little witch became the tooth fairy is an old favorite. One of my grandsons recently lost two teeth so I pulled it out to read to him. As he says, "now my tongue has a place to rest." 

Thank goodness for the joy of little ones. I am holding thoughts for all those in the way of the Colorado wildfires. The breeze is picking up as I finish this post. May it bring rain and snow to the west as well as usher in a wind of change.  

I link to Kat and the Unravelers for Unraveled Wednesday. 

Ravelry Links to projects

Kate's Shawl

Baby Sweater

Poncho with a Cable


  1. The shawl is coming along beautifully, Jane - it's going to be such a nice warm hug! and I smiled at your comment about CoG ...yeah, I heard the same thing from a LOT of women and decided I didn't need to read it. (I do however, LOVE to read real romance ... because I'm not sure there's ever too much of that!)

  2. I so enjoy reading your observations and gentle words about what's going on in your neck of the woods. I haven't noticed many birds here yet, but we are in a stretch of quite warm weather. John can not leave a cherry tomato unharvested and your countertop says the same thing. Good thing they are so delicious! Your spinning is beautiful and I can almost imagine the warmth of that wonderful blue shawl. Enjoy these days of fall and I also hope this awful fire season ends soon for everyone in the west.

  3. The colors on the baby sweater are so sweet.

    Our favorite cherry tomato recipe is to stir fry them with fresh garlic, onion, and green beans.

  4. Hello - I love your knitting projects. I still have cherry tomatoes in my garden too - I think I had better bring them in tomorrow and hope that they finish ripening inside. I love the cute stories you are reading to your grands. Enjoy what's left of the week. :-)

  5. Oh I just was reminded, by your out, that I have cherry tomatoes in my fridge from the store. That baby knit is darling.

  6. Jane, I always feel so soothed and calmed by reading your posts!

    We had one night in the past week where it dipped below freezing, but now we're in the middle of a few warmer days; my husband actually had to turn the air conditioning back on because it's gotten so warm on the third floor, where he has his office. Sadly we have not had the tomato crop that you did this year, so I am quite jealous of your tomato and basil eating!

  7. Like others, I find your posts to be a balm for the soul. Peaceful and lovely. We noticed a junco for the first time the other day. My Grandmother called them snow birds and Fletch said it is way too early for them to arrive! I love your grandson's comment about a place to rest his tongue. So cute! We are harvesting greens (several varieties of lettuce, spinach, chard, bok choy) and still a few cherry tomatoes. All are gifts! Your knitting is beautiful - I'm glad you are finding it peaceful and calming.

  8. I love this line, Jane: "After a night of fitful sleeping, the birds stitch the morning back together."

    I am going to allow the birds to help me stitch my morning back together more often! Thank you! (as always, your knitting is lovely!)

  9. Our feeders are attracting much bird (and squirrel . . . ) activity these days, too, Jane. I love to watch the "bird-joy" happening in my garden all year long. It brings such peace, just to watch them flit about. I haven't seen any juncos at my feeder yet, but I'm sure they'll arrive soon. Enjoy a lovely and restful weekend.

  10. wow you are making so much progress on your knitting! I love the shawl and how textured it is. I finished my sister's sweater but I have to do the bind off of the band again, it's too tight...grr.

  11. what a good reminder that it really is time to start filling those feeders again!! Love the knits....and out of the mouth of babes....a place for the tongue to rest. LOVE IT!!!

  12. I find your blog so comforting, especially in these troubled times. We love a lot of the same things - MA Hadley pottery, seasonal birds, knitting. The chickadees have appeared en masse, but no juncos yet. I do love the 'winter birds'. Thank you for your blog.