YOP 2019 #1

Hello my dears, how are you all doing? So this is the new year … funny how we make such a fuss about a mere change of numbers, isn’t it? Anyway, I’ve decided to start a new Year of Projects in January so that hopefully I won’t forget what week I’m actually in.

This week has seen the completion of a pair of vanillas – mind you, I actually finished two pairs in a mere week! I’m only counting the one pair for 2019, though, because I had knit about 90% of the other pair last year. I have yet to take a photo of my new pair of socks, the light was abyssmal due to heavy rain, overall greyness and snow.

I started my new lace shawl on the 1st, I blogged about it here, and have since started working on section B, the wave pattern. I’m not too far in, though.

Other than that, I was out taking photos:

And I managed to read two books:

Not exactly a productive week but I’m getting there.

If you’re curious about what my fellow YOPpers are up to, or would like to join in the fun, find our group on Ravelry.

WTF 2018?

Thank heavens it’s already November, I’m so done with 2018!!!

First things first, though – thank you all so much for your lovely comments and comfort on losing Peanut. It’s still hurting like crazy, and I guess it will keep hurting for a good while to come, but it’s so good to know that there are dear people out there who understand and care. Thank you.

As you can see from the title of this post, I’ve come here to complain and shamelessly wallow in self-pity today, and I believe I have reason to, since 2018 is so good at throwing crap at me lately. Just when my ribs have healed and I begin to feel like a human being again (it still aches a bit whenever I sneeze, cough, or lift something heavy, but then again, I don’t really need to sneeze or cough that often, and can avoid lifting heavy stuff), I get my first ever migraine attack. The full package, starting with flickering vision and progressing to the worst headache I have EVER had in my entire life, sensitivity to light, nausea, vomiting – in short, I almost collapsed at work (third day back after the rib debacle, a Saturday no less, my coworker had to sacrifice her weekend off to come and stand in for me) and landed in hospital for three and a half days. The doctor on duty was quite certain from the start that it was a migraine attack but apparently, I’m unusually old to experience this for the first time. I know it’s all my fault – at the beginning of the year, I decided that I would take turning 50 as an opportunity to open a new chapter in life, and just go ahead and start something completely new, something I’d never done before. What I MEANT was learning to ride a motorcycle and getting my driving license. What I GOT was a migraine! Well, thanks very much! Anyway, since I’m so unusually old, the doctor decided to put me through an MRI just to make sure there was nothing up there in that head of mine that didn’t belong there, other than a few bees in my bonnett. Well, the good news is there is no evidence whatsoever of anything out of the ordinary. Actually, I could just forget about it, and carry on as if nothing happened. But I won’t.

I talked to one of the nurses, and she said that migraines might be brought on by emotional stress. Come to think of it, I’ve had enough of that kind of stress during the past few months. All the worrying about my jobs, losing Peanut, health concerns, and the changes brought about by our motorcycle adventure that bothered me a great deal (because I don’t deal well with change, and because our relationship as a couple changed, and not always in a good way) … I know that change is inevitable, it’s just part of life, and so is loss and sadness and illness. I know that in the end, I’ll grow more on the obstacles and difficulties than on the easy days – just like a ship will sail faster with a stronger wind in its sails. If the wind gets too strong, though, a good captain will order some of the sails to be taken down to avoid the breaking of masts – and that’s what I need to learn, and what I’ll have to be more aware of in the future. I need to take time off to regroup and breathe, time for my soul to relax and gather new strength. I also need to learn to be honest with myself. Some things just won’t work, no matter how much I want them to, and some things I’ll have to let go, no matter how much I want to keep them. (No, don’t worry, I’m not talking about divorce.)

Crafting has always been a way to relax, get back in touch with my inner self, and think good thoughts. It has been a source of joy, a boost for my self-confidence, a learning curve, and just completely fun. I’ve been playful about it, starting new projects as the whimsy hit me, finishing some and frogging others, looking for new challenges, buying material when I wanted to and could afford it, regardless of the stash I already had, and without feeling guilty about expenses or unfinished objects. And I blogged about my crafty journey just as I went about it, without putting pressure on myself, and without following rules and regulations. I just took an hour or so off each day, to sit and knit, or crochet, or sew, or do whatever else I felt like doing. Of course, taking time out for crafting was easier a few years ago when I was a housewife but on the other hand, I need this special time for myself so much more now that I work outside of the house.

This morning, I decided that I needed a holiday, and so I made one for myself. I watched two episodes of „Midsomer Murders“, took some photos, played a computer game, and sat down to start crocheting the flower border for the Teaflower Shawl. While in hospital, I started a new pair of socks, and just to add some spice to it, decided on stranded knitting this time – oh, and by the way, many thanks to my wonderful husband who not only brought me my knitting, but actually rummaged through my stash to find exactly what I had asked him to bring – so there’s a new pair of „Call Them Cherry Blossoms“ in the making. The Seed Stitch Blanket got some love during the past few weeks, so with luck, we might actually cuddle under it before the bitter cold hits (but even if not, it’s not going to be the end of the world).

Guess what? Feels great to be the me I want to be.

Golden Autumn Days

The long, hot, and extremely dry 2018 summer has finally merged into autumn – and what an amazing autumn we’ve had! Long, warm, golden days, a light to die for, and Lilly ready and willing to carry us on numerous rides all through the countryside. Honestly, I’ve lived in this part of Franconia for more than 30 years, and about 25 in our house in this village, but there’s still so much to see and to discover. I’m already working on a list of places to go for next year.

For now, let me just share some of my favourite autumn photos with you:

(Please click to enlarge)

And now come the days of rain and grey skies … the days of cuddling on sofas, wrapped up in blankets, with a cup of hot tea or cocoa and a good book, and maybe a knitting project. And I’m so looking forward to it.

Withered Rose

(Please click to enlarge)

Concentrating on the small things, and the beauty of that last rose of summer. Withered it may be, but who says that beauty can only be found in the young and freshly plucked blossoms?

Shooting

And so it’s autumn, all of a sudden. The leaves are turning, nights are a bit chilly, there has been rain (hurray for that!), darkness comes earlier, but most of all, it’s that very special light that tells me it’s time to grab the camera and go out. Photography is painting with light, as some wise person once said, so in that sense, autumn light is my favourite colour. Since I’m planning to built a very basic website to keep track of our trips with Lilly, and document the sights we’ve seen and things we did (like our recent trip to the falconry), we took Lilly out for a ride and mini foto shooting yesterday. Here’s my favourite photo so far (please click to enlarge):

I can’t wait for our holidays to start on Monday! With luck, and if the weather holds, we’ll take Lilly out for some lovely rides around the countryside. It has turned out to be one of the most amazing, and most beautiful, adventures of our life so far, and while I still refuse to be called a „biker“, I am embracing this feeling of being an enthusiast.