Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Words and Wool

Life has, rightly, completely gotten in the way of blogging! It has been very full and busy around here with Vacation Bible School, 4h projects due, get-togethers with friends, and trying to stay afloat in the demands of normal life. I have so many things to blog about but have chosen just a few for today.

Last week I spent one morning at Christina's and we did some knitting while enjoying the beautiful outdoors. Christina finished her Pop Spots shawl -- isn't it gorgeous!!! And she bought this gorgeous Ella Rae sock yarn to make a shawl. I could hardly get enough of the color!

I have plenty of tea pictures to post later in the week but this photo shows my current project  -- a raccoon adapted from the Ronnie Fox pattern. I made it through the tough parts by sheer determination! It felt like I had a million threads hanging from the back. Can't wait to show you the finished product in a week or two.....

Rachel entered her shawl in the 4h fair. She did a beautiful job and I was very proud of her for persevering to finish it even though she was quite bored of the pattern. It was so well executed that we were both hoping for higher ribbons on it but it didn't receive any......oh well. 4h is a little like college, in my opinion -- sometimes it's not about the degree or the ribbons you win as much as it is the life lessons you learn along the way! (I'm sorry we don't remember the name of the shawl and can't find the pattern anywhere!)

I have always dreamed of entering things in a fair! Mostly this is because of reading several books as a child (see below). I can't think of the State Fair yet because of my family's demands and schedule, but at the very last minute I decided to enter five things in the county fair!! My latest Maggie Bunny won Champion in the stuffed animal division (hmmm....should I tell you that I think it may have been the only entry in that division?):

I also entered one of my Ginger Leaves Shawlette. It won Reserve Champion!

And my favorite thing I have made in the last year was also well-liked by the judges and won champion. I think that means I may have won a total of $10! :) This will cover my entrance fee and give me $5 to spare! ;)

As for reading, I have read some terrific books lately:

Fit to Burst : Abundance, Mayhem, and the Joys of Motherhood by Rachel Jankovic is going to rank very high on my list of favorite reads this year. I took nine pages of notes while reading this small book. This woman understands all of my frustrations and struggles as a mother and homemaker and I couldn't believe that she had chapter after chapter dealing with them. (I also felt as though my husband had secretly written this book under a pseudonym because it says the same things he is always telling me -- if only I would listen to him more!). It would be helpful if I reviewed my notes every day!

  Glimpses of Grace: Treasuring the Gospel in Your Home by Gloria Furman was another book filled with truth upon truth about how, as Christians, we should view the way our lives are lived in our homes. She builds on common occurrences in our homes (dirty dishes, dirty floors, finding time for friends, suffering, etc.) and helps to give a biblical perspective on this. Definitely recommend this book.

Eric Liddell: Something Greater Than Gold (Christian Heroes: Then & Now) by Janet and Geoff Benge was a book the kids and I listened to together. It tells the story of Eric Liddell, his birth in China, his life as a runner and eventually the winner of Gold for Scotland at the Olympics and his putting the running aside to return to China as a missionary. The book was well-written and kept our attention and it was also very challenging and thought-provoking. Afterward we watched the movie "Chariots of Fire".

Missee Lee: The Swallows and Amazons in the China Seas (Godine Storyteller) by Arthur Ransome is the latest Ransome book we have listened to. This was one of my favorites. It takes place in the islands of Southeast Asia and I enjoyed the humor of it as well as the sense of high adventure.

Windy Foot at the County Fair by Frances Frost is my favorite fair-inspired book. I read it several times as a child and own it now. It has all the romance of county fair life about eighty years ago as a young boy and his horse head to a week at the fair and compete in the horse races.

Farmer Boy (Little House) by Laura Ingalls Wilder also contains wonderful descriptions of the fair, with the time frame being late nineteenth century.

  Charlotte's Web by E. B. White culminates with the fair and does such a good job of describing fair scenes. I think all of these books live in my mind when I go to the fair and I almost see beyond our fair's modernness to the days of yesteryear.

For more ideas on knitting and reading, head to Ginny's Yarn Along.

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Kathy said...

Congratulations on all your wins! Your things are beautiful.

I just re-watched the movie Chariots of Fire and have been looking for a book on Eric Liddle's life. I am definitely going to check the one you read out.

elizabeth said...

fun times! all the knits and crafts are lovely! and that sock yarn, nice!!!

great books... so glad for all of this!

Nice to see you here :)

Anonymous said...

Congratulations to you and your daughter on your prize-winning creations. (Don't I see a first prize ribbon on her shawl?) I always enjoy hearing about your reading. I recently read a biography of Eric Liddell - such an amazing person. I always think of him when I hear "Be Still My Soul," which was his favourite hymn.

Rachel said...

Congratulations on your ribbons! That looks like you swept the table! (do you have that saying over there)? Great fun.
I love the book recommendations. I'm going to try and find those first two you listed-they sound good. By-the-way, did you know that Jeff and Janet Benge are New Zealanders and Janet was one of my tutors at univeristy (a long time ago now). :o)

karen said...

congrats on all the ribbon winning, they are almost as beautiful as your knitting :)

Anonymous said...

Beautiful creations! You should have entered your daffodil tea cozy too! Would it be possible to share the instructions or a link to them for your daughter's shawl?

Heather L. said...

I'm sorry that we don't remember the name of the shawl Rachel made and can't find the pattern she used anywhere. It was a free download on Ravelry -- not much help.....

Everyday Things said...

congratulations on all the show winnings... I love shows like this where everyone shows off their hard work! and you get to see what others have made too! fun!