How Very “Pinterest” of You

When you think of impulse shopping, what comes to mind? Shoes? Handbag? Yarn? Not this gal. Upon stopping for a bottle of wine to have with our Chinese food, I was immediately taken with a bottle of Chianti. You know the one. Round, not tall, with the raffia around the base. Stick a candle in it and – voila! – instant atmosphere. I had to have it. As the clerk rang up my purchase, she commented “how very ‘Pinterest’ of you!” Take a look! Even when picking out wine, I am such a nature girl.

The Eagle Has Landed

Well, not exactly. While I am, at times, a space cadet and my blogger name is Cosmicknitter, I am not going to write about the lunar landing.

Some of my favorite things in the whole wide world are birds of prey. Hawks, owls and eagles. When I see a hawk soaring, it stops me in my tracks. I have been known to hear a call from inside the house and run out to see a red-tailed hawk blast forth from a tree. They are wonderful. I have always loved the Bald Eagle best. For most of my life the only time I saw one was in captivity at a local raptor center. The bird was in captivity, not me. Recently, having some time on my hands, I took a drive to the Rhinecliff Landing. This is a little park and boat launch on the Hudson River about two miles from my home. Instantly upon parking, I spied two mature bald eagles soaring over the river-“catching a thermal” as my daddy would say. They were magnificent, breathtaking and beautiful. I opened the sun roof of my car as they passed overhead. I could see their eyes and make out their feathers. I felt so much joy I wanted to cry! Eagles are making a comeback in my area. They used to be more common, but their numbers dwindled. One of the challenges in preserving our eagle population is protecting them from the Amtrak and Metro-North trains that run on the east side of the Hudson and the cargo trains that run on the west. You can read more about the Bald Eagles of the Hudson River here: https://www.dec.ny.gov/animals/9382.html Next time you are in New York, pack your binoculars (which every self-respecting knitter has in her project bag…) and prepare to be amazed!

If you follow this link, you can subscribe to Eagle Cams. One lovely couple is nesting on two eggs! Just the other day, I watched as mama fought off an intruder. https://www.youtube.com/c/AmericanEagleFoundation

When my boys were small, and I was a young inexperienced mother, I learned that fair does not mean equal. What if my youngest cried “that’s not fair” when his older brother stayed up later than he did, should I have kept him up later because they needed to be equal because fair=equal? Absolutely not. Even if they were closer in age, one needed much more sleep than the other. Fair does not mean equal.

On that note, here is my soap box. Can we please stop electing public officials who believe that the designation of bathrooms is a burning issue of national importance that has to be addressed in the first week of office? Give me a h*cking break.

Wanna see something pretty?

This is a pottery bowl made for me by a wonderful young lady named Margaret. She knows how much I love dragonflies. I wish the photo were better; the colors are so beautiful and the glaze gives it such a striking finish. Margaret, her work (and cute puppy) can be found on Instagram: @wild_design and Etsy: WildDesignNY

Check her out and give her some love!!

Wanna see something else that’s pretty? My virtual friend Katinka has a beautiful blog, YouTube and Instagram presence that focuses on slow living and sustainability. She has recently been discouraged by the negativity on social media and thought of putting more emphasis on her blog and YouTube accounts. Katinka is a talented creator and her content is calming, and so good for the soul. Please pay her a visit if you are weary, or looking to find a quiet corner of the internet that is free from the ills of society. Let’s support one another in our struggle to find a gentler place to reside. Katinka Ponders

No knitting content today. Still plugging away at my honey’s blanket. I will need to order more yarn, which will allow me time to squeeze in another quickie!!

In my glass: Green smoothy (if I add bourbon is it still good for me?)

In my ears: I Thought I Knew How: A Podcast about Knitting and Life you can also find it on your favorite podcatcher.

Saint of the Day: St. Angela Merici, +1540. My husband told me about her this morning. She is a Third Order Franciscan! St. Angela, at the age of 57 (two years older than I am) organized a group of 12 girls to help her in catechetical work. Four years later the group had increased to 28. She formed them into the Company of Saint Ursula (patroness of medieval universities and venerated as a leader of women) for the purpose of re-Christianizing family life through solid Christian education of future wives and mothers. My husband knew I would love this Saint because he understands how much I value individuals who respect our girls and devote their lives to educating and forming young ladies in body, mind and soul.

:deep sigh:

Thank you for hanging out with me. I hope you are taking time in your day to nurture your bodies, minds and souls, too!

So much love to you all and prayers for peace in your day.

ReginaMary

Life is Beautiful

Some of the best dreams are the ones where I can fly. Not just fly, but SOAR. Little effort is needed for me to rise above everything. I don’t take on a Superman pose, with my arms in front of me rather, my arms are to my side. Every so often I have to move my arms to give me height or speed, but for the most part I am soaring. It is so calming and peaceful. What a wonderful experience. I don’t know if any of you have had similar dreams. If you have, please take a moment to share them with me.

Some of the best foods are the ones that look like crap. There are a few things that I never buy because I don’t know moderation when eating them; liverwurst and German bologna, to name a few. Pickles are another favorite; not just any pickle, but a garlic dill eaten out of the jar. I recently walked into the kitchen to find my son eating pickles out of the jar. I have raised him well.

Making progress on the knitting front. I am down to the last ball of yarn for my husband’s blanket. He should have plenty of winter to enjoy it. Come to think of it, he will enjoy it in the summer if the air conditioning is too chilly for his legs.

I inherited a sweater quantity of yarn from a friend. 16 skeins (about 1500 yds) of Classic Elite Believe, a cotton/rayon. The photo is washed out. The yarn is black. I need a pattern that will be easy to navigate so I won’t have difficulty reading the fabric. I have a few in mind.

Emma’s Caponcho

This begins as a cowl then grows into a cape/poncho thanks to the addition of increases down the sides. Don’t you think it would be nice in a drapey cotton? I am hoping the yarn fades a bit with washing. The plain stockinette would be ideal for embroidery. Thoughts?

Easy to knit in stockinette.

Top Down Poncho

As you can see, I am drawn to a cape or poncho for this yarn. I think it would make a great layering piece over jeans or a dress. I would hold the yarn double for this one. Not sure about the buttons. I have visions of them constantly coming undone. Don’t tease me.


I did a bad, bad thing. I clipped Razz’s nails last night. You know where I am going with this, don’t you? I snipped one nail too close to the quick. I KNOW!! My little boy squeaked in pain. He is fine, I am scarred.

For Christmas, I received a gift certificate for Harney & Sons Tea. I had a field day filling my cart. Formosa Oolong, Darjeeling, and Irish Breakfast. All loose tea. While cleaning out the storage closet recently I found a tea pot that my sister passed on to me. I cleaned it up and had fun filling it with my new tea. I learned a lot about this pot. It is heat resistant and can sit directly on the burner. I trust this to be true and have no intention of testing the claim.

In my glass: Peppoli Chianti Classico in a Pittsburgh Steelers glass. Salute!

In my ears: 9-1-1 Calls Podcast with the Operator. OMG! I love this podcast. Don’t worry, they always follow up the 911 calls with a happy ending!

Saint of the Day: St. Agnes. This is one heck of a story. Legend has it that Agnes was a beautiful girl of 12 or 13 yrs whom many young men wanted to marry. Among those she refused, one reported her to the authorities for being a Christian. She was arrested and confined to a house of prostitution. The legend continues that a man who looked upon her lustfully lost his sight and had it restored by her prayer. Agnes was condemned, executed, and buried near Rome in a catacomb that eventually was named after her. The daughter of Constantine built a basilica in her honor. What a horrible experience, but let’s hear it for our girls. Any surprise Agnes is the patron saint of girls and girl scouts?

As always, thank you for stopping by. Don’t be a stranger…drop me a line and tell me how you are!

Have a blessed day and hug a puppy!

I’m going to leave you with the song my husband and I danced to at our wedding.

Keb’ Mo’-Life is Beautiful

This is for Robert.

Love and peace to you all.

ReginaMary

But What About the Puppies?

I have been seriously toying with the idea of deleting my Instagram account long before the latest whoooha. This isn’t the first time. I ditched Facebook and Twitter months ago and I am so glad I did. So what keeps me hanging on to my account? Well, all the yarny deliciousness right at my fingertips. I follow friends and knitters, dyers and designers. I would definitely miss all the inspiration in those posts. If I am going to be completely honest though, I would have to say it’s really all about the puppies. What would I do without the puppies?

This is Kevin. He has an Instagram @agoldennamedkevin. He quivers.

Well it has been a while. I hope everyone had peaceful holidays. I did. They weren’t all that different for us; our celebrations are typically quiet. The US Postal Service extended my husband’s Christmas. I just receive a gift I ordered from early December.

Thanks to weather and some really good football games, I was able to knit a hat. I have some long-term projects on the needles that will take a while to complete, so it was fun to throw in a quickie. (All you fans of the Office, enjoy that one on me!) I knit the Piper Hat by Yankee Knitter Designs in a bulky merino by Le Mouton Vert. My sister purchased the yarn for me while hiking in South America, but it is available online. The Piper is a lovely, cabled hat that is fun to knit, and combined with this yarn, it makes for a warm topper that is super wooly and soft. Melinda Goodfellow is the designer for Yankee Knitter. She has a very sweet Instagram presence-one of the reasons I stay. Please send her some lovin’! When yarn festivals are a thing again, I plan on heading to Connecticut for festivals and an in-person meet & greet. The photos will show you the evolution of my first pom-pom! The first image is what a pom-pom looks like when left to my own devices-Shaggy McShagster. My friend Katherine loaned me a cool little wooden gizmo by Loome and voila! I left the two ends of the pom-pom long and fed them through the top of the hat. Then I threaded them into a button and just tied the ends together. The button keeps the pom-pom in place and I can remove it whenever I want. Can you see it in the photo?

I am making slow and steady progress on my hunny’s blanket. I timed myself. It takes me 17 minutes to knit one row. That is without any interruptions from this guy:

He loves to go in and out and in and out all day long whenever we have the fancy rain.

My hand is in the photo for size perspective, not because I aspire to a career in hand modelling.

Yes, that Bill has been up to no good again! Here is his latest farmer’s market purchase:

I am knitting a cowl in the style of the Scoreboard Cowl. Since the wool is black and grey, I am loosely following the Las Vegas Raiders 2020 schedule. Not a fan of the team, just a fan of the yarn!

The end of the year brought many wonderful encounters. Some mornings, as I pull into the driveway at school, I encounter a lady walking two beautiful Golden Retrievers. Naturally, I stop in the middle of the road to have a chat! Traffic be d*mned! Just before we went on break, I received a piece of mail in the office addressed to ‘Secretary’. Welp, since that is me, I opened it.

It was a Christmas card from Parker the Goldie! Parker’s human wrote me a nice note on the back, introducing herself. Apparently, we talk so much about our puppers that we failed to share our names. This comes as no surprise to anyone that knows me. I showed everyone the card. I mean EVERYONE! Every kid that came by the office saw it too. There is something so special about this breed. Boop that snoot! Go ahead. I know you want to.

I received an email from a knitter who spied some wool in my stash that she desperately needed for a project. The yarn is no longer available and she asked if I would sell my skein. I really did not want any money for it; it feels so good to rehome yarn to someone in a yarn chicken death battle. Later that week, I received a card and a set of beautiful stitch markers as a ‘thank you’ for the yarn. Knitters are a lovely bunch!

Sudeshna used to have an Etsy shop where she sold her wares. Aren’t they beautiful? The best part is that we are now friends on Ravelry.

I did not make any resolutions for the new year; I typically don’t. I am, however, listening to The Bible in a Year podcast with Fr. Mike Schmidt. I love it and at 20 minutes a day, I learn so much. I also like knowing that I am sharing in an experience with so many people around the world. Very much like the community I find here.

This post has been languishing in my draft folder for waaay to long. I have said it on many occasions, but it bears repeating, all of my blogging friends who keep to a regular schedule have my unwavering admiration!

In my glass: Makers Mark

In my ears: Me. Me crying over what has to be the worst 5 minutes of football I have ever seen. Oh, but wait, there’s more! The next 5 minutes proved to be more than I could bear. Good night, Steelers, it was great while it lasted.

Saint of the Day: St. Alexander of Fermo. Not a lot of information about this saint; he was born in the year 250, became a bishop and was killed for his faith. I will gladly raise my glass to this man.

My son’s name is Alexander. I know tons about him, and he is in the early stages of sainthood. (Aren’t you, sweetheart)

Random Robert wisecrack: “Do you need the light on, hon? Oh wait, I forgot. You are the Cosmicknitter, you can knit by the stars.” He is such a goofball.

Sending love to everyone who stops by this silly little blog. I am enriched by your comments and humbled by your generous hearts. So much hugs.

ReginaMary

A Nice Minestrone

This post has no real direction; it’s a little bit of this and a little bit of that. Just like a nice minestrone.

It has been a busy few weeks for your favorite knitting space cadet (that would be me…). My sweet and plucky 93 yr old mama had some minor surgery so I spent many hours in waiting rooms and in some cases, due to COVID, sitting in my car. Just me and my knitting. I managed to get a few projects done. Let’s take a look, shall we? We shall…we shall.

You may recall from my last post, the basket of Roma tomatoes and skein of yarn I received from Bill, one of my son’s clients. Well I ate all the tomatoes. Raw. With olive oil, black pepper and sea salt. Apparently, they were intended to go into sauce. “No regerts!” I also knit up another Barley Light for Bill with the yarn. I threw in a pair of Appleseed Mitts from yet another skein he gave me; it seemed fitting. I failed to take proper photos before I gave them to him and he assured me he would send me an action shot for my blog and Ravelry page. I was not disappointed. Here is a fella who is ready for the elements.

I am so glad you like your knits, Bill. You are very knit-worthy...

The next thing off my needles was The Seamed Wrap by Purl Soho.

A free pattern from Purl Soho, this was a joy to knit. The pattern calls for an all-over linen stitch with a band of two-color linen stitching along the neck. I did not have the patience for all that, so I began with a large band of linen stitch, knit the body in stockinette with garter stitch selvedges and the two-color linen stitch to finish it off. This is a modular piece that can be worn sideways, front or back hanging. It can also serve as a dog pillow, but that’s another story entirely. {{cough:Razz:cough}} I knit this using Miss Babs Yowza, which knits up into such a soft drapey fabric. I could have made the smaller size since Yowza does tend to stretch. Next time. And there will definitely be a next time.

There was a big event in my house. My husband bought a new chair. Not just any chair, mind you. A recliner. A real dude chair. An electric powered, soft as butter recliner. He is soooo happy!! He has wanted a chair in the bedroom so he can sit and read or pray quietly and comfortably. Feet up, nice lighting, peaceful surroundings. Get the picture? I’m sure you are wondering what this has to do with knitting. Or maybe not. If you are a knitter, you know where this is heading. What comfy chair is complete without a knitted blanket to snuggle under? It was his idea, I swear! The request was for a simple blanket in browns golds and blues; brown to match his chair, gold to match the dog and blue to match his eyes. I jumped at the chance to break the yarn fast, people! My friend recommended Webs since they always have sales, and there I found the perfect yarn. This is a wool/acrylic blend in all the right colors.

He wanted a simple pattern so I cast on for the Summer Sidewalk by Fifty Four Ten Studios. This will be the third time I knit this blanket. I cast on 400 stitches. Last thing I want is a skimpy binky! While this won’t be done in time for Christmas, it will be ready for the cold and dreary months that follow.

On the non-knitting front, my sister is home from Japan for a few weeks. We haven’t seen her in a year. She quarantined so we celebrated Thanksgiving the Saturday after and we had a beautiful day. One of the perks to celebrating late is not having to deal with the insanity at the supermarket.

Look what she brought back for me!

On the days when my husband is out of town, I’m always a bit blue. This week, before he left, he gave me flowers. The message on the card reminded me that even though he was leaving, Baby Jesus was coming! He makes me smile.

My chonky boy has lost 17 lbs since September. With less stress on his joints and the cold autumn air, he jogs around the neighborhood little pup!

Razz and his cow.

And in other news…

here are other things that keep me entertained.

I’ve been walking a lot.

It’s no wonder I’m so h*ckin tired.

I also enjoy stalking Golden Retrievers on Instagram

Saint of the Day: December 14th is the feast of Saint John of the Cross. He is the patron Saint of contemplatives, mystics and Spanish poets. He is one of my favorite saints. I read “Dark Night of the Soul” at a very significant time in my life and the impact was profound. It was as if his writings found me; they spoke to the struggles I was having at the time and helped me navigate very difficult days and very dark nights.

“In the dark night of the soul, bright flows the river of God.”

~St. John of the Cross

In my cup: Lagunitas Hop-Hoppy Refresher

I love this stuff. It has no alcohol, no carbs and no calories. It has a crisp and refreshing ‘hoppy’ taste. You can still win a belching contest, but without all the boozey side-effects.

In my ears: The Patriots vs The Rams. It’s Thursday Night Football, baby!! Can I just say how happy I am that the NFL ditched the color rush uniforms.

I appreciate that you stopped by for a visit.

I hope everyone is healthy and well and enjoying all the traditions of the season.

Peace to you all,

ReginaMary

Yes, Sir…That’s my Baby!

I don’t know how it gets to be a month between posts. I admire all of you who write daily or weekly. I really do.

I have two grown boys, aged 27 and 25 years. Who is my real baby? I think you all know.

This guy:

A few weeks ago Razz developed a growth on his lower lip. It grew quickly and it was ugly. His vet said she doesn’t like to play around with things on a dog’s mouth, so off it came! He did great. Surgery was uneventful and he came home without the cone-o-shame. The biopsy showed it was cancer. Good news is that the vet got it all and the skin around the site is healthy. Look at that face. Tragic.

Besides fretting about Razz, what have I been up to? I have had a productive few weeks. I have finished objects, people! You were introduced to some of these projects here: https://cosmicknitter.com/2020/09/22/sound-and-fury-signifying-nothing/

I am very proud of this sweater. It is Savage Heart by Amy Cristoffers. There were obstacles, but not with the pattern. A mind is a terrible thing to waste. This had some ‘new-to-me’ techniques. The sweater is knit in two halves and from side to side. It also has an applied I-cord edge on the bottom which I loved doing! And finally, I learned how to seam reverse stockinette along side seams as well as a bound-off edge. I am very pleased with the results. I am going to wear the HECK outta this one!

Next off the needles was the Larks Alvina by Louisa Harding. I would describe this as a nice palate cleanser! Easy pattern to follow using two balls of Morehouse Farm Merino Lace.

The last project to come off the needles was another Barley Light. I received a surprise delivery a few weeks ago. The doorbell rang and I was greeted by my son who was bearing gifts from his client, Bill, with the message “pretty please?” How could I resist? The tomatoes were supposed to go into sauce, but I ate them whole with a little sea salt and black pepper.

This is a great pattern and the yarn is from Sawkill Farm which is 10 minutes away in Red Hook, NY.

I love a good impulse buy as much as the next gal, so when I saw this fella online, I had to pick up a few for my knitting friends. I love his face. Here are photos of our front stoops. Mine is in the middle. I’m going to call her “Baaabs”.

We are planning a much needed vacation to Orwell, NY.

See that little dock? I love to sit there and say my prayers each morning.

Razz can’t go swimming because of his surgery, but there is no reason why he can’t go canoeing with his mama. These were taken last year. It was his first time in a boat.

Welp, that’s all folks. This post took forever and day to finally make it out of drafts!

Have a blessed day and kiss your favorite furry!

Love,

ReginaMary

In my ears: The wind is howling and gusting. Such a great sound!

In my cup: Tomato Bisque and black pepper crackers…I could eat this every day.

Saint of the Day: Today is All Souls Day! All Souls Day is a holy day set aside for honoring the dead. The day is primarily celebrated in the Catholic Church, but it is also celebrated in the Eastern Orthodox Church and a few other denominations of Christianity. The Anglican church is the largest protestant church to celebrate the holy day.

The End of Summer

Where did the summer go? You would think that working from home for weeks on end would result in a long, boring season. It was not that way for me. In my last post I wrote about all the knitting I did, without much to show for it. Today, I thought it would be fun to go off-topic somewhat and share with you some of my non-knitting wins.

I turned 55 in June. In spite of my health, it was a fabulous day! I wore my birthday tiara, got pretty flowers from my sweetie, bought myself a Razorbacks t-shirt, got a new Kitty for my desk and had lots and lots of CDC approved kisses.

The gyms may have been closed, but I spent my time in the Lord’s Gym!

I turned over gardens, hauled blue stone, thinned and transplanted perennials., and made lots of places for my birds to relax.

We had some victories at work due to solid leadership and a dose of teamwork:

I found some cute shirts to wear when I putter in the yard. I see a theme.

One of my first social outings was a visit to my friend’s porch to discuss her class budget. It was a beautiful day to snuggle up for a photo with her littles.

New friendships were made.

My honey had a birthday too! What do I give a guy who doesn’t ask for anything? A garden! Moving more dirt and stone for my man!

Once it fills in and blooms, it will be lovely. I planted Russian Sage and Rose of Sharon (both dwarf varieties), a miniature pine and some periwinkle for ground cover. St. Francis seems very happy! Next year I would love to add a hummingbird feeder.

Welp, that is my summer in a nutshell. Not bad if I do say so myself!

Have a blessed week and if you celebrate Yom Kippur, G’mar chatima tova! May you be sealed in the Book of Life!

Love to all,

ReginaMary

Sound and Fury Signifying Nothing

Life’s but a walking shadow, a poor player,
That struts and frets his hour upon the stage,
And then is heard no more. It is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
Signifying nothing.

I always chuckle at that last line. It was one of my daddy’s favorites and it basically sums up my knitting in July…and August…and September. The last time I wrote was the end of June. I don’t know where the summer went. I have been knitting quite a bit, but due to some health issues, I have very little to show for it. I had a bit of trouble with my brain due to Lyme disease. I became easily confused and unable to concentrate on simple tasks. There was one point where I could not recall any of my wips! I continued to work on the Lace Blanket MKAL by CeCi at Oh La Lana!, however I found some of the blocks to be too difficult for me to process at the time; for those I knit one of her simpler designs. I did not want to bail on the project completely, but I was becoming increasingly more upset with my lack of ability to understand what I was reading. Here are some photos of finished blocks. I am now working with black wool.

Back to Square One…

I cast on a pair of socks in the spring. I was nearing the finish line on the first sock, and decreasing for the toe when things went south. I know what you are thinking. How can things go wrong on simple toe decreases? I don’t know, but they did. In my frustration I ripped out the entire sock and cast on again. This is the extent of my progress. To maintain my sanity, I am just doing a simple top-down sock in a 3 x 1 rib.

The next project should have been done about 3 months ago. I have knit and frogged this one 3 times. It is the Savage Heart Cardigan by Amy Cristoffers (caution: this link takes you to Ravelry). I am using Superfine Merino 2-ply by Cestari Sheep and Wool Co. in a natural light gray. This is a really beautiful wooly wool. I am using my Addi Turbo circulars for this sweater, but the wool is still dragging quite a bit on the needles. I work on this here and there because it is hard on the hands and for a while I was experiencing some numbness in my fingers that made knitting tricky.

Can you smell the lanolin? My husband caught me doing a deep-inhale face plant in to my knitting last night.

I participated in a KAL hosted by Morehouse Merinos and Ann at I Thought I Knew How Podcast. The pattern was the Lark’s Alvina Shawl (link goes to Ravelry) by Louisa Harding. This is a very satisfying knit. I chose to knit mine in Haystack. A few more yards and I’ll be done!

Now that football season is here, and the gardens are fading, I will have a lot more knitting time on my hands and hopefully some FOs to share!

I hope you all are well. I have been enjoying everyone’s posts and beautiful sharings. It is my intention to write again soon; I would love to share some of my non-knitting related adventures. For now I will leave you with a photo of me and Razz-the best boy ever!

Mutual Admiration Society

Have peace in your day and coffee in your mug!

With love,

ReginaMary

Saint of the Day: Today, I picked a rather obscure saint to share with you. St. Phocas the Gardener. Phocas earned his living by cultivating a garden near the city gate of Sinope (now in Turkey). The quiet and beauty of the plot he cultivated proved quite conducive to prayer. He shared with the poor what he earned from his gardening, and opened his home to travelers lacking a place to stay. He is patron to gardeners, sailors, inn-keepers and farmers.

In my cup: I am having a glass of wine, thank you very much!

In my ears: Monday’s Saints vs Raiders game. Robert puts football on for Razz to watch while we are at work.

The Nature of the Beast

I haven’t said much about COVID-19 here because, honestly, it is mentioned practically everywhere, but I am going to take a moment to speak briefly about the virus.

This I personally know to be true:

It is stubborn. It is pervasive. It does not discriminate. It is an opportunist. It is multi-faceted. It is mysterious. It sucks. When we go out for groceries or for errands, no one, and I mean no one gets a text from a loved one or friend saying “don’t forget to pick up a virus while you are out.”

It’s not on our ‘to do’ list either. ‘clean the office, do laundry, pick up virus.’ The virus that found me was left behind by someone and it sat there just waiting for a host. Maybe it jumped on my hand, or found my clothes, but somehow, it found me, and if I am not careful, it will try to find someone else. Why? Bottom line…It is the nature of the beast.

Now, not everyone thinks this virus is a big deal. It is shocking, but some believe it isn’t real. Many people don’t socially distance themselves or wear masks when around people. Heck, we all know that person who isn’t even in the habit of washing their hands. Why? Bottom line…It is the nature of the beast.

The big buzz word out there lately is “self-care”. In order to be of any benefit to family, friends and colleagues, we have to be healthy in body, mind and spirit. While that makes perfect sense, self-care often comes with the temptation to only see things in a manner that is relevant to ourselves. That sounds perfectly natural, right? But when something bigger than our individual selves comes along, it may benefit us to look at the bigger picture first. I like to think of this as “other-care” This virus is big; it is bigger than our individual selves. Heck, this virus is global. This is a fact. Period.

I won’t lie. I have been experiencing a constellation of emotions along with the various symptoms. The one that bothers me the most is anger. This emotion grows deep roots; I would go so far as to say it has tentacles. I felt it trying to take up residence in my heart and it scared me. I spent one particular day sitting, praying, reading and writing. I turned to one of my favorite mystics, St. John of the Cross. In ‘Dark Night of the Soul’ he writes of the journey to become closer to God. He does so by starting out with an honest to goodness, no holds barred, sit down, pay attention and follow along look at the 7 deadly sins; the first of which is Pride. And that, my friends, did not resonate with me at first. Until I sat, and prayed and wrote some more. Then it clicked. Pride was at the root of my emotions. It is my pride that had me convinced people should do what I believed was right. They should act a certain way and follow the rules. If they didn’t, then I got angry. That is my pride. We are all individuals with the God given gift of free will. I will exercise mine, and by the same token, I need to accept the fact that others will do the same. This self-reflection was liberating for me. It started to loosen those tentacles of anger that tethered me and I began to feel lighter and more at peace. It was self-care on a deep and personal level. The virus knocked me on my keister, but my pride had the power to cause me the most harm. I love God, I love the ocean I love the weather, but I also have a healthy respect for their power. I can now add the power of this virus to that list.

Oh, I plan to exercise “self-care” by wearing my mask, social distancing and washing my hands, and by doing so, I will be practicing “other-care”.

There are no memes with this post, no cartoons or irreverent potty humor. I’m just not feeling it right now. I know you will understand because you are a supportive and lovely bunch of coconuts.

Be well, practice self-care and while you are at it, throw in a measure of other-care; it will do the world good.

Love to you all.

ReginaMary

I Am The Winner

When I was a young mother raising two boys there was a growing trend that puzzles me to this day. The idea was “there are no losers, everyone is a winner!” I have been scratching my head ever since. If I subscribed to this mindset, a game of Candyland would be rather confounding, and my son Ben would never have been able to bankrupt me in Monopoly. (word of advice: If he ever becomes a landlord, avoid him at all costs).

So, if everyone is a winner, and there are no losers, then there really are no winners. We are tied and everything becomes ‘meh’. So why bother? This is how my brain works. It’s a curse.

I will be the first to admit that there have been, and continue to be times when I am a loser.

Trying to fill a colander with water. Loser

Asking my husband where Leonardo da Vinci was born. Crossword puzzle clue…five letters…begins with ‘V’. Double loser

Whatever. Loser. Dead to me.

This past month, I received two prizes in the mail because I was the winner. I won and everyone else lost. Sorry folks,

And here’s what I won:

A door prize courtesy of The Knitting Garden during the Long Island Yarn Crawl. This is some serious loot. Thank you, JoAnn!

This is the Rowan “Quench” Kit. It includes 8 balls of Rowan Cashmere Haze and the pattern for Lisa Richardson’s stunning tri-color scarf by the same name. I also receive a bag of mixed stitch stoppers and a Maker’s Keep both by Cocoknits, and a set of Nirvana Mango dpns. This is a new-to-me brand and I look forward to knitting with them.

The next win came as a surprise. I entered the Lolodidit Gameday KAL and my Cheesehead socks were one of the winners. Knit anything in one of her team colorways, enter a photo on Instagram with the hashtag #lolodiditgamedaykal and you could be a winner, too! I won a $30.00 gift certificate to her shop lolodidit.com. Guess what I picked? C’mon, guess! Another skein of her team themed sock yarn. This time in the Auburn Tigers colorway.

War Eagle!

So you see? I am a winner. If only there was a way to bump off Mr. Plumpy…

Damn you, Mr. Plumpy!

Saint of the Day: St. Francis Caracciolo. He’s a nice Italian fella from Naples and patron to Italian cooks. Bene, mangiamo tutti!

In my cup: Coffee 3.0

In my ears: Sweet Tea No Shade knitting podcast

Stay well, my friends!

Be cool, stay in school.

Up with hope, down with dope.

Geeks rule!

{{Hugs}}

ReginaMary