Sunday Sum-Up: October 30, 2022

Another busy week around here. I’ve been hoping that things will calm down a bit, but I have a feeling there won’t be much of a slow down until the new year. It’s going to be a long couple of months.

On the bright side, I had a great time at the state park and got some nice photographs.

I’m not sure what the weather will start doing, now that we’re going into the second half of fall, so the little trips out of town that I’ve been taking may be curtailed, but I have a few places I still want to go, so we’ll see if the weather cooperates. If it doesn’t, there are plenty of museums here in town to go ti.

Obligatory Mina Photo:

Mina had a pretty good week, filled with plenty of treats and naps. The radiators have been coming on strong at night, so it’s almost hot in my apartment when I wake up in the morning. Mina is perfectly fine with this. I’ll find her curled up on the floor next to the radiator in the bedroom, as happy as can be. Personally, I turn on a fan so it will feel a little cooler but Mina seems to love the heat. She’s less thrilled about it in the summer, but I can’t blame her for that. The humidity is impossible to escape in the summer, but this drier heat is far more comfortable.

I made her a new little blanket to nap on. I had put it on top of the small bookshelf in the living room, but I’ll probably put it under the bedroom chair (which is next to the radiator) so she’ll have a more comfortable place to hang out on the upcoming cold days.

What I Finished Reading Last Week:

Nothing. I didn’t finish reading anything last week.

What I’m Currently Reading:

The Fellowship has just left Lorien in The Lord of the Rings. Two more chapters before the end of the book. It’s been interesting to see Galadriel now, in light of The Rings of Power. We’re familiar with her character from this book and from the Peter Jackson films, but her story in the First Age and the Second Age is a lot less certain, as Tolkien retconned her into the histories, and then never really finalized her story. Like many other parts of the early ages of Middle-earth, no one is really sure exactly what happened to these characters we’re familiar with at the end of the Third Age. I can’t say that I’m really looking forward to the breaking of the Fellowship, but it’s always a pleasure to end up back in Rohan in The Two Towers.

Ordinary Monsters keeps taking turns I don’t quite expect. Marlowe and Charlie Ovid have made it to England, but they aren’t safe from the smoke-faced man, no matter what the adults try to do. I have just reached a point where the story is going to have what seems like a major flashback, as it’s about to jump back in time to explain the history of the villain. I’m not sure how I feel about this, as I’m not generally a fan of flashbacks. But we’ll see. I could be pleasantly surprised about this turn, but mostly I think I’ll be looking forward to getting back to Charlie and Marlowe.

It’s been a long time since I read The Tombs of Atuan, and I’m finding that I had forgotten most of it. The book is progressing differently from what I thought it would, but I’m thoroughly enjoying it. Ged’s humility in the face of his situation is going to save him, and also show Arha a different way of living from what she’s been taught. I’m now very curious as to how her character will change in the later books, as Le Guin’s mindset changed quite a lot from the 1960s and 70s, when she wrote the first Earthsea books, and the 1990s, when she wrote the later books.

T. Kingfisher is becoming a new favorite author, as I am loving The Hollow Places. It’s set in a small town in the Carolinas, but the characters and setting feel like they could be in my home state of Nebraska just as easily. Small towns are full of interesting characters and weird places no matter where you are in the country. Kara and Simon are a fantastic duo, with plenty of snappy one-liners and enough curiosity to believably wander through the hole in the wall and into a weird world that is sure to become terrifying in short order. It’s already creepy, and they haven’t explored very much of it. I don’t know how Kingfisher manages to balance humor and horror so well, but she does and it’s a perfect blend for me. I’m loving the atmosphere and Kara’s geek-culture outlook on things. Assuming it maintains it quality (which I’m sure it will), this may end up being one of my favorite books of the year.

The Craft:

It’s been a while since I showed off any of the things I’ve made. That’s partly because I hadn’t really been making things over the summer. At least, not crochet or sewing or anything like that. Mostly, I’d been mending things and it’s not really interesting to show off mended pockets or pillowcases.

I’ve made two new scarves (in addition to a couple of little blankets for Mina):

This is a scarf/shawl that I made with a very simple pattern of my own devising. I used a blue/white/blue-green ombre yarn that had been sitting in my yarn basket for a couple of years. It’s very pretty yarn, but quite thin, so I had no real idea what I should do with it until I finally sat down and figured something out that would suit it. It took much longer than I thought (because of the relative fineness of the yarn), but it’s soft and lightweight and will do just fine for those days when the temperature hovers just above freezing.

I have to admit that the name of this particular color drew me to it first: ‘Whale Road’, which is a kenning from Beowulf. ‘Whale road’ is a poetic name for the sea. I have a feeling that the person who named this color is a Tolkien fan, as these days, it seems like most people pick up Beowulf because of Tolkien’s works.

The name isn’t the only thing I like, though. I love these colors and the way that they blended together in the finished project. It’s a Malabrigo Rios yarn, so it’s very soft wool that’s easy to work with and doesn’t make my hands itch the way other wools have. I’m working on a small blanket with Malabrigo Rios in Plomo, but it will be a while before that is done. This scarf is something I’ll wear on those windy or snowy days when I want something warm and cozy to keep the weather off my neck.

I have a feeling I’ll be working with other Malabriogo yarns, as they’re available at my local yarn shop. It’s a bit of a drive to get there, but thanks to the quality of yarns they carry and their friendly service, I’ll be making a trip there whenever I find myself itching to crochet something new.

11 thoughts on “Sunday Sum-Up: October 30, 2022

  1. I love that set of falls. Even when the water level is low it makes for a great scene.

    I’m right there with you regarding T. Kingfisher. I’ve not read nearly enough by the author but I’m looking forward to correcting that.

    I wasn’t familiar with whale road, but I love that. It makes perfect sense and is such a beautiful way to refer to the sea. And speaking of Beowulf, I lately thought to try a reread of it one of these days, reading each transaction or adaptation I have, which I think might be around 4 at this point. I thought it might be interesting contrasting each with the other.

    I hope you find a little peace amongst all the work in the coming months. 🙂

  2. I’m taking a crochet class next weekend if I get off the waitlist. I’m not particularly good with thungs like that, but I appreciate anyone who knits, crochets, quilts, whatever

  3. I love those little falls, too. They’re so pretty, even though I’m taller than they are. And it’s such a peaceful little place.

    Good luck with your Beowulf reading! I’ve read a few translations myself, and my favorite so far is, of course, Tolkiens. But I haven’t read Seamus Heaney’s yet, even though I’ve had a copy for a few years.

  4. I wouldn’t have guessed you’re taller than those falls, that’s awesome. Getting down low works really well there. Glad to hear about Tolkien’s Beowulf. The versions I currently have are by Tolkien, Seamus Heaney, Frederick Rebsamen, Maria Dahvana Headley, and Ernest J. B. Kirtian. Perhaps I’ll have more by the time I decide to start this. 🙂

  5. We don’t have many tall waterfalls around here. Not until you get to the northwestern part of the state. I still find it strange that I can look over these falls, since I’m not very tall myself.

    I enjoyed Maria Dahvana Headley’s translation, but I think it’s so wrapped up in slang and whatnot of 2019/2020 that it’s going to feel extremely dated very soon. I listened to the audiobook, and that was fantastic, so I recommend reading it that way.

  6. Thanks!

    The Earthsea books are great! Lovely ideas and such an interesting world. And you can see Le Guin’s development as a writer and thinker. I have the big edition that has all the Earthsea stories collected, along with illustrations by Chris Riddell. It’s such a pretty edition!

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