Short days and long shadows.

jenjoycedesign© small quilt 2
This morning was very exciting when we got hit with a storm, and with the temperature dropping degree by degree, I won’t be surprised if it snows in the next few hours.  I have been taking a break this January from all self-expectations and enjoying some slack!  Three months living in our new house, I’m wanting to work on new habits and trying a few new things, in addition to keeping up the knitting. One of the new things is starting sewing again, which actually is a lifelong passion of mine, but has been pretty much not for a few years.  Lacking a lot of confidence, I have to start really small, so after the holidays passed I made a bunch of quilted coasters and a small coffee table quilt for Jeff’s den, done in the Amish quilt style.

jenjoycedesign© itty bitty quilts

Also I have tentatively begun sewing some much needed clothes,  for making my own clothes is truly is a mark of my authenticity, and so I am experiencing a beautiful reunion with the needle, thread & thimble after a long hiatus.  I’m really enjoying hand stitched finish work, delicious felled & French seams, slowed to a snails pace, and frankly I couldn’t bear it to go any faster for the hand-sewing just tickles some innate part of me which must have lived a hundred years ago. But more on that later.   The month is already half gone and not wanting to lose my knitting mojo entirely I decided to quick knit a pair of socks. I picked up a few ‘flavors’ of Kroy Sock yarn at Michaels some time over the beginning of the holiday, and am now finally enjoying some calm hours to knit.  Here beneath the sleet coated sky window, I thought I would photograph this unexpectedly fun pair I’ve got going . . .

jenjoycedesign© Kroy striped ragg

Pattern is Walking With Emma , chart A ribbing and modified with stockinette.

The days are short but getting noticeably  longer by the week,  and the wet snowy sleet is falling.   I love January!

9 thoughts on “Short days and long shadows.

  1. Dearest Jen
    I have missed you. So happy you are back to share your pursuits and process with us. Both your sewing and your knitting and beautiful. I love the darker tones with the flashes of colour.
    I laughed when you said “French seams”. I did a sewing course last year that has rolled over into the weekly “sewcial” session. I made a toile for a pair of wide-legged pants. Not only did I do french-seams I did hand-stitched top-stitching (Knowing, ever since completing the leg seams that the toile was too right)!
    Mental.
    Although maybe not quite so mental, as they have committed to my FOTS diet (Food Other Than Sugar!). Grief reduced my high-end culinary output to toast (lashings of butter) and my usual fare was chocolate, biscuits, lollies and ice-cream. My weight soared so, in one way, the time spent on my French seams has guided me back to the importance of nutrition.
    Being cosy in your wee house while the elements create the perfect cold, beautiful backdrop sounds like heaven. As you may be aware my country has been busy incinerating every living creature unable to escape by car, boat or chopper. I have been unaffected (so far) but it is very early days in our “summer”.
    Growing up in the shadow of World Wars I wondered how it would be when finally, PTSD-free parents were able to raise their children. What mad Utopian thoughts was I entertaining?
    Unbelievable.
    It is lovely to think of you and Jeff and Emma as cosy as 3 bugs in a rug!
    Welcome back.
    Cheers
    Karin

    • Karin, could we be twins separated at birth?
      You really do know how to tease with your mention of hand sewing and buttered toast, but shall we just let it all find its natural gait and run with it. Please know that I am thinking about you every day and worried, and not wanting to get in the way of your trying to forget about all of the wildfire tragedy, I have forced myself NOT to drill you for updates. I must tell you though, the other week, listening to NPR just after MrT attacked Iran and a firefighter from the bush describing the Koala’s in the burning trees — I just broke down and had to duck out of news for a while. I am so happy to hear that physically you’ve remained unsinged, but certainly not unhinged, as I know the PTSD is a killing blight. Shall we un-hinge together in spirit , I’ll share my buttered toast, pts weight gain, and when it rains eventually, it will wash away so much grief. Already three months in the new (unfinished) house, I’m already forgetting the fright and depression. I prescribe indoor activities which remind one how blessed our creativity can transform, and pull the blinds until the rains come again. And they will. Love Bunches, xx

      • Thank you so much…
        Your talk of indoor pursuits hit exactly the right spot. I am really pleased to hear you are re-emerging.
        We had some rain here. It was mixed up in a huge dust-storm and pasted everything with red mud.
        I won’t go on.
        We still have a lot of summer to get through.
        I dream of autumn.
        Much love
        XX

        • Oh, but Karin, just so you know, this is a place where you can go on, are encouraged to go on, because as you know, we here in California are in the same inevitability as your Australia, fire sisters. Rain….oh the beauty in it!!! Lets dance a little rain dance and dream of cooling Autumn, and of cold still Winter. xx

  2. I love your patchwork items, they are beautiful. The socks look great. Did you end up getting any snow? Sleet is awful stuff to be out in.

    Those of us in Southern Ontario, Canada are getting quite a bit of snow this weekend, including freezing drizzle and rain.

    Karin, I hope that the fires in Australia will be out soon. Sending lots of positive thoughts your way

    • Thank you Wendy. I really enjoyed the quilting! Using a thimble really helps, so I’m hooked on the use of one from now on.
      It kind of snowed for a very short while, but nothing stuck as it wasn’t cold enough I think. We’ll probably get some snow this winter though.
      Poor Karin, I feel for her!
      xx

      • We got more snow overnight and it is still snowing. Soon I will need to head outside to clear the snow off the steps, sidewalk and driveway.

        At least you didn’t have to shovel the snow you got. 🙂

        I could never get comfortable using a thimble doing hand quilting,

        • Oh definitely a conundrum for some, and I could never use a thimble before, very well , but now I am trying to get more efficient and ergonomic, and the thimble just makes sense.
          Right, I ought not go bragging about if we have a little snow… for its hardly ever more than 2 or 3 inches. Snow shoveling is definitely exercise!

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