What A Mess.

Those of you who come here often know that this is not a political blog. I rarely write about current events, for many reasons, not the least being that I feel way too uneducated to find the right words. However, I am a mother, and this is to a large extent a Mom Blog.

So, how to explain atrocity to children, who (bless their sheltered lives) don’t know what pain is? Yesterday morning, a sentence I never would have hoped to hear from any of my children – „Mom, we have war“ – kick-started an ongoing conversation that incorporated history, geopolitical considerations, the East and the West, the Cold War and the NATO … They need to learn about this stuff, and my husband is a very good honorary history teacher.

Nobody seems to be quite certain at what Russia’s end game might be, though, and it’s not only my daughter who keeps asking the century old classic question of the pacifist: „Why?“

Right now, my heart goes out to the people who have chosen to run already, because they seem to feel, regardless of the outcome, life as they knew it is ruined :-/.

Our own lives are, simply because of the random luck of living where we do, unaffected otherwise. My daughter has a school play coming up, my son’s internship is going great, my husband is prepping a shoot, and I, thanks for asking, got the crochet book job. It’s a great book, and I’m having a wonderful time with it, after having gotten my head back in the game.

In my spare time, I’ve been working on my Red Sweater, and if all goes well, I’ll be able to finish it next week. Here’s the sweater journey so far.

Sometime in October, I saw this post on IG. Loved the huge ribbed cuffs that were actually half the sweater, and instantly wanted to try that!

During my 10 days off, when I finally had time, I bought red yarn, and got started.

At first, I thought I wanted raglan sleeves, like so:

Then I realized what I actually wanted was a boxy crew-neck sweater, and sat down to draw it.

So, unraveling the top halves of front and back, and redoing them it was. Here’s where I am now:

I’ve been binging The Vampire Diaries all through this process. Not sure why I love the show so much. It’s basically a teenage show, and I’m a middle-aged lady whose high school days are long over. I did have an intense Anne Rice phase in my twenties, though, so the genre is familiar enough. Did you know she passed away last December? May she rest in peace – she was famous for sexy, atmospheric gore, and I have great admiration for anyone who can pull off writing light fiction in style. Anyway, I’m hooked on the fates of The Vampire Diaries bunch now, humans, vampires, werewolves, witches and ghosts, and that has made my sweater progress a swift one.

There, and now I’m smiling again. Evidently, a little knitting and TV talk has managed to pull me out of the dark place a little. Thank you for dropping by and taking an interest.

Oh Concentration Where Art Thou?

For me, the pull of the outdoors is strong on days when I can’t really stay with one thing for very long. While never having officially been tested for ADD, I’ve lived with a child who was. After puberty, it got so severe that he actually took medication for it, which I have very mixed feelings about. While it helped him pull through school it was still a severely invasive treatment and I wouldn’t have been okay with it had he not asked for it himself. Anyway, I know a little about the condition, and I may or may not have a disposition for it myself.

At this point in my life, it’s neither here nor there. Having chosen to work from home, and to be self-employed, it’s a very comfortable way to deal with a wandering mind, restless hands and feet and processing a whole stack of ideas, all at the same time. I believe that the way my mind works enables me to juggle household and mothering chores while managing my actual workload as a professional. None of my clients is going to care how I get there as long as I submit my work on time, and whether I choose to work on the couch, at a desk or at a kitchen table. Not sure I’d still be able to sit still in an office all day – and I feel very lucky not to have to.

Last week I had a week off, which was a good thing. I took the dog out to the cottage, to a freaking freezing house (it was 3 °C when we arrived), so the first 2 days were spent frantically feeding the woodburners, and taking advantage of the heating pad and electric radiator for the bedroom.

Being there all by myself without the family was strange, and the fact that I wasn’t working was even weirder. My last two years were busy in a way that I was barely able to accommodate, one book after the other … and it took a few days to sink in that I was allowed a break. And apparently, now the week has passed, I’m not quite done with the vacation mode.

One remarkable thing that happened last week was our son turning 20. He’s an amazing young man, and we’re so lucky to have had the privilege of raising him. Truth be told, in a lot of ways, I feel he and I raised each other. I have learned and grown through him more than through anything else I ever did. Our daughter, who entered the picture almost 7 years later, reaped the benefits of this process; I know I was a lot more relaxed about stuff that would have sent me into a tailspin when her brother was little. Astonishingly, looking back, I still managed to do a decent job with both of them, even when I had no idea what I was doing, 20 years back. Go me, I guess.

That said, I’d be remiss not to mention our awesome friends who became chosen family along the way, and whose help cannot be weighed in gold. They grounded me when I was freaking out, gave advice when I asked for it, had my back when I was feeling lost, and provided love and acceptance my parents weren’t around to give anymore. You know who you are, and I feel it’s a good opportunity to say thank you for everything you have been to me over the last two decades!

Ha. That got a little maudlin. I guess Big Round Birthdays will do that to you.

So what else happened last week? Long walks with the pup every day, which was a given.

Cooking for self, which was nice.

Knitting while watching Netflix during the day. Felt very daring ;-). Ordered new yarn online and got started on a red sweater, inspired by this IG post:

Running a tub whenever I felt like it, eating when I felt hungry, wearing PJs until noon, buying myself flowers.

In short, not being a mom, for a little while.

Also, before I went, I was lucky enough to get a spontaneous tattoo appointment with my lovely friend E. I’d wanted this motif for a while now, and now I have it, and I love it very much.

She is a woman of many talents, but I think it’s fair to say that fine line tattoos are a specialty of hers. Here’s her website. Highly recommended!

Also, the funniest thing happened the very same day I got the tattoo – a publishing house I had not worked for in a few years made an enquiry for a crochet book! These things work in mysterious ways, don’t they? I haven’t signed anything yet, but getting the enquiry alone seemed surprisingly spot-on! Wish me luck, the book looks really good!

Have a lovely week, everyone, and thank you for dropping in to read.