I write two days after a generous snowfall, generous as in 14.8 inches. Monday as snow fell I made a pot of chili and my German Grandmother's hard rolls called semmel. Yesterday I layered up and walked. The snow crunched underfoot. I passed a bush filled with sparrows chirping to each other. I stood under a long needled pine and looked up at green needles etched with snow. No snow fell on my face and I was almost sorry. One of the best gifts of a snow fall is the quiet that follows. Snow muffles the road noise from nearby busy streets. Everything slows down.
Today snow sifts off the trees a little at a time. Two pair of cardinals came to the birch and the feeder. I love the subtle coloring of the females. The chickadees and downy woodpeckers have also been in the tree and at the feeder.
We have had a fox in and out of our yard and neighborhood since Christmas Day. In the wee hours of Sunday morning, my husband saw him in the backyard. The next morning I went out and took a photograph of his tracks that I sent to a grandson currently fascinated with foxes. I also got out Tracks in the Wild, written and illustrated by Betsy Bowen. I purchased the book several years ago when we visited Bowen's Studio in Grand Marais, Minnesota. Now there is a place that knows about winter.
I am linking today with Kat and the Unravelers to talk about knitting and reading. The body of the Forager Sweater is five inches long. On a cloudy day, it photographs as a purple blob. Wanting a smaller project, I cast on a pair of socks. I'm knitting my version of the vanilla latte sock. When winter temperatures drop, I often reach for socks knit from Classic Elite Alpaca Sox. I know alpaca with its tendency to grow seems like an odd choice but I have successfully used this wool/alpaca blend. I knit them in ribbed and/or cabled patterns and they hold their shape and are warm. Classic Elite is no longer in business. I saved the leftovers of three skeins for a pair of mix and match socks. I weighed a pair of finished socks in this yarn, 66 grams, and weighed all the leftovers, 87 grams. Theoretically I should have enough leftover yarn for a pair of socks. Theoretically.
I continue to work on the embroidery sampler. I am having fun choosing colors and not worrying about perfection.
My husband and I are enjoying an older book of poetry by Ted Kooser called Winter Morning Walks. When Kooser wrote these poems, he was recovering from cancer and was instructed to avoid sunlight for year. He had stopped writing but rose each day before sunrise and took a short walk in the dark. One morning he was able to write a short poem about the rural Nebraska countryside where he lives. Gradually he found his way back to writing and began sending the poems on postcards to fellow writer, Jim Harrison. The poems are titled by date only. I suspect marking the passing of each winter day helped him mark the slow return to better health. I convinced my husband to listen to a poem each evening after dinner because we were tired of pandemic and political conversations. The book is lovely.
Have a good week.