First off, I never did pick a word, but now I need to go read my older post and see what I was considering and maybe refocus myself now that we’re on the downslope of 2020.
Around April I took some time to itemize my most active or recent works in progress and assigned them all numbers (I made a list on my desk blotter – I didn’t number the bags or anything). Then I took a piece of paper and listed the next 30 days, used a random number generator, and assigned each project to a day. This worked surprisingly well in helping me get some things finished that I’d be ignoring. Some days I ignored the “assigned” project because I didn’t have the mental bandwidth for that particular one.
I kept that up thru much of June and then it fell away. I think it’s an element of my “pandemic fatigue.” I’m tired of this state of the world. I’m annoyed I didn’t have my usual trip to NY and to “my” camp to recharge in the woods. I’m annoyed that some people aren’t doing what is in the best interest of society as a whole. I’m annoyed I put on 15 pounds because “while we’re in isolation, we’ll eat what we want.”
Since August has arrived I’m trying to regroup. I spent some time going thru some containers that needed to be processed. It was stuff my mom brought to us when I was living in North Carolina (so, 2+ years ago. Yes, we moved it to AZ with us). It was stuff from my childhood bedroom and largely things from high school and college. Most of it was thrown out either because it was just unnecessary (why did I save these specific stuffed animals? i don’t know, so they’re clearly not important), or dirty and not worth saving (like a massive plastic mug that had the names of everyone in my high school graduating class on it).
There were a lot of letters from my spouse from when I was working at summer camp and he was working for his grandparents, from friends, from my grandparents; pictures from high school and college that I want to look at more closely; and things that deserve more thoughtful handling. Those were consolidated into one container and I can deal with those this month. There were Girl Scouting things like my cadette tie (I think?). I considered repurposing the material for a face mask and then got annoyed at having to still deal with masks (I agreeably wear one everywhere outside our house, but I’m annoyed that it’s August and things are worsening).
Maybe it’s watching Hoarders that has me in the mood to tidy more stuff. Who knows. Don’t look in my kitchen, though, because it’s not motivating me to constantly have a clean sink.
A few years ago a friend introduced me to the concept of a Word for the year. This can be used to help you focus or make decisions, or just serve as a subtle mantra or reminder during the year. It can encapsulate what you want out of the year in a way. It can be a softer focus than a series of RESOLUTIONS that might seem like huge goals or that quickly become unachievable once the “new relationship energy” of January wears off.
One year my word was “Light.” Light has many meanings and it helped remind me to have more daylight (open the curtains, go outside), use the stacks of candles I have in the house, focus on the weight loss I wanted to achieve, reduce the unnecessary things in my life. Lighten. Enlighten. Light.
This year I’m not set on any one word yet and I was thinking about recycling Light again. I used an online thesaurus to find some synonyms and they’ve led me down an interesting path. As a result I currently have a list of words that are up for consideration. I think I’ll end up with one main word and then a few words that are auxiliary or scaffolding words. Maybe branches. Maybe some other metaphor I can’t quite grasp at this moment. The word list (in no particular order) is:
I actually had a few more words written down on my desk blotter, but as soon as I typed them I knew they needed to leave the list. So, that was useful. There was at least one word that as soon as I wrote it on the blotter I knew it was wrong and crossed it off. Others were wrong just by saying them aloud.
I need to do some work and sit more with these words and see what really speaks to me.
If you choose a word or words for the year, which did you choose?
I’m only vaguely organized. I have little pockets of space that make sense and the rest remains a work in progress. I had a couple of shirts that needed to be ironed (just throwing them in the dryer with a damp towel wasn’t going to remove the wrinkles). So, I also rounded up the hankies that I try to keep on hand and ironed them, too. It’s possible the first things I was ever allowed to iron (remember when you had to ask permission and it was a treat?) were hankies or tea towels. I really enjoy this tidy pile.
I also went thru my various knitting works in progress at the start of the month. I reclaimed some knitting needles (things I was never going to finish for various reasons). I also made a list of things I definitely wanted to finish so that those items take priority.
Here’s to a productive 2020!
I used to post regularly with Ginny’s Yarn along. Instead I’ve completely slacked on all blog things, so I’m easing back in with a Yarn Along style post.
I’m knitting in my car before a work shift starts. I’m reading The Alphabet House by Jussi Adler-Olsen and kniiting the Precious Metals socks by Louise Tilbrook.
I’m posting from my telephone and may add links later from my computer. That seems like one task too many right now.
What are you reading?
I’m certain that most people won’t post an image like this when thinking of technology. This is a picture of the bidet controls on a toilet in a hotel room. Can you see all those functions?? There’s a water heater and everything! It was AMAZING. And I know – you’re thinking, “How could a toilet be amazing?”, but it totally was. You’ll have to just trust me.
How can I relate this to gratitude? This toilet was part of our 20th anniversary trip to the UK and beyond. I am grateful to be married to the same great guy for 20 years, that we were able to plan for and afford this trip, and that we have modern sanitation. It’s amazing.
I decided to focus on friends for this because there are prompts coming up that will cover family for me.
This picture was taking a couple summers ago at Camp Little Notch. A bunch of us were all out on the lake at once and hooked ourselves together in a sort of flotilla (??). These people are all my friends. Some I only speak to once a year, others I talk to on the regular. Either way – they’re my people and I’m glad to know them.
I don’t work for pay out of the house (or for pay in the house). My work, or the things I consider work, center mostly on the kitchen. I don’t love making dinner nor doing dishes. This is a shot from a weekend where I had been letting the dishes get away from me.
I’m grateful that we can afford the food that makes the dishes dirty and the hot water and soap to get them clean. Maybe I need to remind myself of that the next time I’m staring at a sinkful.
Considering the name of the blog, this should come as no surprise. I also do a decent amount of reading (print and audio) and I waste a stupid amount of time watching Netflix.
I’m currently reading Fletch Won and The Stonecutter. I’m watching season four of Orange is the New Black – I’ve seen most of it but had forgotten and wanted a review before I started season five. I’m not sure what the current season number is, but I’m behind for certain.
The knitting pictured is a request from my spouse: a wool sweater for him. It’s “Beagle” by Norah Gaughan knit in Wool of the Andes Superwash in “Cobblestone Heather.”
This is the first yarn I’ve acquired in a long time. I’ve been able to knit from my stash for a long time and that’s definitely something for which I am thankful. I’ve had some patches of very over-zealous buying and have been trying to curb that. It actually has been pretty easy with how large my stash is. I didn’t have a sweater quantity of anything, though, so this project required a purchase. We did the pattern and yarn browsing while my mom was here visiting and then she offered to buy the yarn. She said she would consider it DH’s Christmas present from her and that doing that made the holidays one person easier. I’m not certain the finished sweater will be his present from me this Christmas. Well, not if I still need to be useful in other ways…
Earlier this evening I took a picture of my steering wheel to use for this prompt. Then, while out for my walk, I saw this:
It’s a shaved ice & ice cream food truck. I’m kind of grateful for food trucks. They can serve as a less expensive way to get in to the restaurant/food service business (less expensive than opening a full sized restaurant), they can serve a variety of populations (because they can set up almost anywhere), and they can introduce people to new cuisines.
The knitting group I attended in North Carolina met at local microbreweries and similar places. Often they only served liquids with maybe a small selection of prepacked snack things (bags of chips, etc). Many of my yarny friends came to knitting directly from work and so having a food truck at the brewery was very helpful – they could get dinner with their beer. It was handy for me because frequently I chose not to eat with my family on those nights so I could get out of the house earlier 🙂 It was fun to be eating at new places all the time, and fun to be in such close contact with a business owner/chef.
This one was set up in the parking lot of my local city park. The park was BUSY: kids on the playground, kids shooting baskets, people playing cricket, people walking dogs – hopefully it was a good night for the vendor, too.
“Something I do every day.”
Again, there are so many things that would work for this (including yesterday’s tea picture). I picked this:
Every day I take medication and supplements. This means I’m thankful for modern medicine, health insurance (and yet I wish we had single-payer here in the US), safe access to pharmaceuticals, and the financial stability to allow for me to not have to worry about whether I can get my meds this month.
And yes, I totally fill a pill box every week. I take them all at bedtime, but it’s easier to fill this box weekly than to open 4 bottles every night.