Thursday, July 29, 2010


Seven (7): wonders of the world, continents, dwarves, days of the week, deadly sins, virtues, planets (Pluto was wronged so I'm kicking out Neptune too), alchemical metals, bushido virtues, veils dance, layer dip, jeans, seas, sacraments, summits, archangels, chakras, pillars of wisdom, up, -11 slurpees, years this child has blessed my life.
Happy Birthday my beautiful girl!

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Western Bread and Eastern Thought

While kneading dough on my counter I was pondering the reasons making bread calms and centers me. I have recipes for no-knead bread; no mess, no hassle, no time spent, but it is these very things that I find so fulfilling. I love how all of my senses are engaged. I have no cares heavier than the cool flour powdering the air as the dough forms beneath my palms. I have no fears the sight of the dough rising to its purpose cannot assuage. I am far from doubt as the aroma fills the house. I am peaceful and contented as the crust crackles and I savor the first delicious bite.

Lao Tzu wrote, we shape clay into a pot, but it is the emptiness inside that holds whatever we want. I find my self empty, waiting to be filled, in the smallest of moments; the winding of wool on the swift, noticing the light shifting from eastern blue to western gold in the rooms I wander, and listening to the laughter of loved ones so lovely it makes me pause and miss them even at arm's length. This reverential simplicity, these fleeting wabi sabi moments, fill me with the meaningful feelings; patience, faith, love, humility, gratitude, trust, acceptance, leaving no room for suffering I do not need.

These simple acts have two things in common: transience and possibility. They are as fleeting as doves, perched upon the edge of becoming something else altogether; the yeast and flour sustaining bread, the wool a comforting garment, the light another day moving us closer, laughter reminding us life is finite. But as beautiful as these thoughts are, nothing is definite; the bread could burn, the wool knot and fray, the storm keep the light from us for days, the laughter turning to a sob. Thich Nhat Hanh said, "People have a hard time letting go of their suffering. Out of a fear of the unknown, they prefer suffering that is familiar."

I must strive to approach life as a collection of these simple moments and allow myself to be emptied over and over, to let go of my fears, to be brave in the darkness and fill myself with light. I must illuminate my own path. My dough has risen now; another simple moment has moved before us and I am grateful you paused to share it with me.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Ad Finem Socks

Two Halloweens ago, I knit my Headless Hessian socks. Still a fave pair. Last Halloween I had intended to knit a witchy striped pair of knee socks. Intended. Still intending. Will definitely (maybe) get to them. This year? I started a nice respectable pair of grey socks and somehow by the end was adding in selbu skulls in a fit of pure whimsy if whimsy were dark and threatening of course. So, I am early for Halloween and the ever popular blog-fodder National Talk Like a Pirate Day on Sept. 19th. Go figure.
Details on ravelry. Aargh.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Shop Update

Pneuma shop updated! You are all invited to stop by. I've thrown in a couple knitting images for all of my wool minded pals and a few from the beautiful places I've visited recently.

The above image is one of my favorites since it is of my favorite girl wearing my favorite guy's favorite shoes in her second favorite color. Uncle Michael should be proud. We are all proud of this girl, this smart, beautiful, graceful girl, who wants me to mention this is her new bike as well in her first favorite color.

She has made it her mission to read and memorize all the poems in my collection of Shel Silverstein. I did the same as a child. Which one was your favorite? The moving Where the Sidewalk Ends? Or perhaps the uncomfortably inevitable Boa Constrictor? I love them all.

Listen to the musn'ts child. Listen to the don'ts.
Listen to the shouldn'ts, the impossibles, the won'ts.
Listen to the never haves...then listen close to me.
Anything can happen child. Anything can be.
Shel Silverstein
ETA: I'm in the feature again on the POE blog! Thanks guys!

Thursday, July 1, 2010

A Study in Record Breaking Procrastination

There comes a time when even the most productive knitter has to accept she or he is not immune to SSS. I was hit hard. Blindsided by what I thought would never happen to me; second sock syndrome. Now I know it is real and it is nearly fatal. But I survived and anyone who can overcome self imposed obstacles to fulfillment deserves to celebrate. Grab a partner and throw yourselves into an impromptu Flamenco on the kitchen chairs while singing about the color purple at the top of your lungs. Trust me, frivolity and dancing cure anything. I wonder if in thirty years she will grab her children and ask them to dance on chairs. I hope so.

Boring Bits:
Wool: Pigeonroof Studios Original Sock in cassis gifted from the incomparable and lovely Larkin.
Needles: US# 1 DPN

Please send me your last pair of shoes,
worn out with dancing as you mentioned in your letter,
so that I might have something to press against my heart.
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe