books, yarn, and babies

DSC_0002DSC_0011DSC_0013 (1)DSC_0003 (1)DSC_0010DSC_0008DSC_0012DSC_0013DSC_0017DSC_0020DSC_0023DSC_0025DSC_0029DSC_0030DSC_0033DSC_0008 (1)DSC_0009DSC_0014DSC_0005

Lots of reading, snuggling, dandelion picking, school, imaginative play, and yarn taking up most of our days lately.  Nursing + rock-a-bye babying too.  Quiet days at home mostly, without any sort of hustle out of the house.  Driving each other up the walls sometimes because of all that proximity, finding each other to be our best friends the rest of the time.  With the weather warming up, we are finding ourselves outside more of the day, making garden plans, smelling the earthy scent of soil and honeysuckle on the breeze.  Spring is a shoulder season, a tug-of-war between winter and summer, and lately we see both winter days and summer days, and we don’t mind either one bit.

My mind feels all over the place, too–feeling behind on garden plans and preparations while trying to stay focused on finishing our school year well.  As I’m coming out of the initial recovery period after having Wren (she’s 6 weeks old tomorrow!) I feel my strength and energy returning, and we’ve been out almost daily for walks and fresh air.  I find myself reminded to keep my camera in hand, snapping pictures of our ordinary moments.  I find myself remembering and reorienting to who I am and what I love.  Sometimes I feel like I should rename this blog “books, yarn, and babies,” because it seems I have little head space for much else.  I promise more “soul” content will come soon, at least I believe it will.  But even as I say that, I hear the dichotomy.  I’m learning to remember that, as Gerald Manley Hopkins said,

“Christ plays in ten thousand places,
Lovely in limbs, and lovely in eyes not his
To the Father through the features of men’s faces.”
(As Kingfishers Catch Fire)
He shines in all that’s fair.  I find Him in the simple beauty of my current work, which is laboring over these children and this home, aiming to see Kingdom come, here and now, even if I lose sight of the connection sometimes.

I started this baby blanket for Wren at the end of January, and it feels just right for spring with all the lace and dusty pink.  I gave it a bath last night and blocked it and can’t wait for it to dry so I can snuggle her in it!  I used Quince + Co Osprey yarn which is incredibly squishy, springy, warm and soft.  With it being finished, I’m eager to begin a new project. Finishing things breathes fresh air into me, feels like a clean slate.

I hope wherever you are, you are finding bits and pieces of new life, freshness, spring, and the hope it seems to bring.

yarn along

DSC_0058 (1)

I’ve almost finished the baby blanket for Wren, but needed one more skein of yarn to finish the last couple lace repeats in the pattern.  I’m adding length and width to the blanket to make it a more substantial baby blanket.  I’m eager to finish it, block it, and wrap baby girl up in it!  It’s been slower to knit on because I can only work on it when I have almost no distraction around, which is hard in these busy days.

I finished reading A Circle of Quiet (loved it) and was part way through At Home in the World by Tsh Oxenreider but just couldn’t really get into it for some reason.  I am not feeling ready to be out and about yet so I haven’t made any trips to the library for more books.  Last night I was scouring my shelves for something to read in the bath, and came back to Christie Purifoy’s Roots & Sky.  I forgot how much I loved this book, but a few pages in and I am hooked again.  It’s odd reading it again, almost two years exactly after my first reading, and seeing my notes and thoughts in the margins.  I feel like I’ve changed tremendously in the last two years, and not necessarily for the better.  I read this book before we had bought our home but were in the process of looking and dreaming, and it felt quite significant to read this book about journeying to find “home,” in the midst of that.  Now I come to the book having lived in our first home almost exactly one year.  The reflections I have now are so different as I read Christie’s words about her experience of longing for, looking for, and making home.  I think I believed some of that ache for home would end once we had a place of our own, but I realize now that there will always be a sense of displacement and longing for something indefinable, for what I know to be that far country, that final Home.  Anyway, she is a phenomenal writer, and I definitely recommend this book.

Joining with Nicole’s weekly Crafting On.
Affiliate links included in this post.

yarn along

DSC_0073DSC_0069

I’ve been knitting this baby blanket for our little girl, coming the last week of February.  I’m not a great lace knitter, I don’t think, in that I don’t really have much practice knitting from charts and in order to follow of line of instructions I really need total focus.  I’m not to the point where I can memorize lace.  Thus, I must have quiet to work on this blanket!  Sometimes I can do more mindless knitting while I do school with Phoebe.  This project is something I can only work on when the kids are in bed at night and I’m not watching something I’m terribly interested in.  That being said, I absolutely love working on it and wish I had bigger chunks of time to do so!  I am adding one extra lace repeat on the side and bottom to make the blanket a bit bigger.  I already love how it’s looking and can’t wait to see it block out when it’s done.  Knitting with Quince & Co. is always a treat!  (Brandon graciously let me indulge on yarn for this project.)

I’m reading A Circle of Quiet for the first time.  Just a few pages in, really, but enjoying and commiserating with her reflections on motherhood and creativity.  Often find myself craving my own little circle of quiet.  These days, even though I attempt to rise earlier than the kids, Philippa’s little ears seem to hear my coffee brewing on the stove and she always creeps out with tousled hair to snuggle with me in the dark while I read.  So few moments truly quiet + alone.  I ache to spend more time writing, as I used to, but feel like there is so little time in these busy days, and my brain is going in so many directions that the work of focus has become quite a labor.  I know that there are seasons of producing in our lives and also seasons where seeds are lying dormant in the soil doing the necessary work of waiting in the dark.  Good things will grow eventually, and we must be patient with the process and not always ancy for the fruit.  Each day and season has its own gifts to be enjoyed and thorns to handle.

Linking up with Nicole’s weekly Crafting On.
Affiliate links included.