Thursday, February 20, 2020

What's Happening

At the beginning of this year I had this idea that I would spend much more time blogging. I had the intention of writing and also connecting more by reading blogs and commenting, starting a conversation. While this is something I still want to do, the reality looks a little bit different.

I honestly am not sure what happened to January and how come that we're more than half through February?

My friend's two daughters had their fifth and first birthday at the end of January and the middle of February, so I was busy knitting for them. The fox socks above were for the older girl and I learned a couple new techniques while completing them. It made me so happy when my friend told me that her girl is practically living in those socks - there is no nicer compliment! The younger girl got this dress which is the same pattern as the dress that I knitted for the newest member of our Turkish family back in the summer. Photos showed me that it was well received and it fits the little girl.

I was also busy knitting socks for my Etsy store since I got quite a number of orders in. Since last fall I have introduced new colors and thus extended the color range which proved to be a successful idea. I wear these socks myself and know how warm and comfortable they are.

Speaking about the Etsy store, I also got a lot of orders for Valentine's cards. Remembering Kaefer's classroom Valentine's parties in elementary school and how I always made those mini cards for her classmates myself, I had started to offer classroom sets of handmade mini Valentine's cards in my store - and so far every year I had many customers who wanted these cards. They're made to order and this year I made 480 Valentine's cards!

While I did all this knitting and also some of the Valentine's cards I was listening to an audiobook. In January I borrowed an audiobook through amazon prime reading; it was a short story by Alice Hoffman, "Everything My Mother Taught Me" and I was quite captivated. Out of curiosity I listened to the audio sample of "One for the Blackbird, One for the Crow" and was immediately drawn into the narration. The voice of the narrator - Jackie Zebrowski - fits the plot of the book perfectly. I thought for a few more days about it and then signed up for a 30-day Audible trial. I thoroughly enjoy this book, but I don't know whether I will actually keep Audible - it's not exactly cheap. If you listen to audiobooks I would like to hear your thoughts.

Whenever there is time I walk around the lake. I was very lucky to get a few early mornings in.

Unfortunately, time spent at the lake has become quite rare. My colleague at the high school library has accepted another job and left within a week. So far we haven't replaced her, but I do have a substitute who is the mother of one of Kaefer's classmates from 5th to 8th grade. We have a lot of fun together even though there is a lot of work and some days are quite chaotic. The interesting thing though is that I enjoy it - something that hadn't happened for quite a while. I still love my teaching job - we had to go through some rough times at the school that involved some hard decisions, something I am not very fond of. But I feel that our team has really come together which is just as important. We 're currently working on our budget for the coming school year, and since I'm on the board now as well that is quite a steep learning curve for me. Certainly never a dull moment. On top of that I have a new private student - every now and then I do private tutoring, and it's always very enriching since I learn a lot through it as well.

Beside all of that I'm trying to do this:

While I have made up my mind about most of the candidates, propositions and measures on the ballot, I am struggling with the presidential candidates. Honestly, I can't develop full enthusiasm for any of them. Our primaries will be on March 3rd, so I need to make up my mind soon.

On Valentine's Day I went to Davis to get her ballot to Kaefer (lucky her, she already made her decision) and we spent a beautiful day together. I met the crew at her workplace (I don't know whether I ever told you that she has had a job since the beginning of her sophomore year), chatted with her room mates and we had a lovely lunch on the patio of a bistro in downtown Davis (yes, outside on February 14th!).

Usually I don't elaborate in this space about the things I wear. I'm not particularly interested in fashion, I don't wear make up and my hair gets a cut a couple times a year. However, it's becoming more and more important for me that my clothes come from sustainable sources or are fair trade etc - I'm not a department store shopper (I'm not much of a shopper anyway!). When I heard of Allbirds shoes and saw them on my neighbor's feet I was intrigued by their environmentally friendly approach. Then they came out with a flat in the color "poppy" and I was sold (well, actually it was the other way round, but who cares...). Even Kibeau approves!

And when there is time - like yesterday - I drive out to the ocean. Yesterday I had the beach almost to myself - beside the seagulls and the seals.It's my happy place that always works its magic on me.


Elephant's Child said...

You have been super busy.
I adore your fox socks. I am not in the slightest bit surprised they are a big hit.l
Yay for the respite of the lake, the ocean, and precious family time.

Red Rose Alley said...

I always love to see what you're knitting, Carola. These fox socks are too cute. And the dress and colorful socks are so nice. What a special and thoughtful gift for your friend's daughters. I absolutely love those rainbow socks, and would wear them all the time too. The town of Davis is charming, and we visit there from time to time. It sounds like you are busy with other things besides Photography.....and that is a good thing. Many interests in different things gives us balance. : )


Terra said...

I like the rich warm color of the fox socks, and the multi colors in the ones you are knitting. I've never tried an audio book, I like printed books so much. I think audio books would be good for people who have long commutes. I found a company that makes tops that are all cotton and made in the USA; your shoes look cute.

David M. Gascoigne, said...

Just reading all that you do leaves me exhausted, so it is not hard to see how time flies for you! The results of your knitting are terrific! Well done.

Jeanie said...

There is so much to love in this post I don't know where to begin! But I'll start with your gorgeous cat who reminds me of my first, Stimpy. And your very cute shoes. I need to check those out. And your Etsy site -- I didn't know you had an etsy site - how did I miss this? Those socks are making my heart sing! Wonderful knitting indeed! Beautiful photos and I'm so glad you are enjoying your work in a different way. That's always good. Happy week! And weekend!

La Vie Quotidienne said...

You have been so busy! I love all of your projects, the knitting is so beautifully done, your craftsmanship is extraordinary, and the cards are adorable.

I quite agree with you about the slate of candidates, but I think a moderate has the best chance of winning in November, and that is crucial.

Thank you for another lovely post.

La Vie Quotidienne said...

...I forgot to mention, I always listen to audio books, I get mine from the library, they have a great select both of Takeaways which are very small and portable, you use your own ear phones, I use these when walking or gardening, and books on CDs, which I listen to in the car.

Lowcarb team member said...

Well, as others have also said … you have been busy.
Love the fox socks, and the cards are wonderful.

All of your photographs are wonderful.

All the best Jan

Cheri said...

I've had an Audible account for a year. I'm not renewing. I loved it, but it is pricey and I've recently learned that I can "borrow" audio books via download for FREE from the Philadelphia library! Check out your libraries and see if any have an audio book program. Sarah tells me the selection isn't quite as broad, but with all the books in the world, I'm sure I can find enough to keep me busy. :)

I'm also trying this year to start more conversations via blogging. Maybe in between the rest of life, we will find time? Couldn't agree with you more on having a hard time getting behind any of the presidential candidates!

noone said...

Looks that you have so much other things going for you and real life is more important that blogging. No matter how much/big ones intensions are.

Mae Travels said...

That baby dress is really a classic. It seems to me I’ve seen it on many baby photos from years gone by. Or maybe I inherited it for a doll when I was a child. Very nice knitting!

best... mae at