Still not looking at the scale. Why would I be tempted to depress myself more, when there are women browsing at my booth to ask "And when are you due?" (I left Rob to man the store at that point, and wandered off to commiserate with a fibre friend who gently brought me back to reality by sharing that, owing to the fact that her hair is coming in grey post-chemo, she went straight from "when are you due?" to "would you like the senior's discount?" Perspective, right?)
Last week, I managed one full gym session, one run, a couple of walks, and a smattering of Pilates and push-ups. I think this week will be better, but I do know that I need a self esteem boost, and looking good in clothes NOW rather than at some indefinable future date would help my state of mind enormously. (Also not having a perpetual gut-ache from a too-small waistband.) The catch is that we no longer have the sort of budget that will accomodate multiple "transitional" wardrobes. I found a couple of nice tops at the local goodwill last week (including a perfect sweater that made me wonder why I bother designing for myself when other people's cast-off handknits suit me so much better), but the pants will require some judicious creativity.
Right now though, I'm going to indulge by walking to Lost Lake and sitting on a gloriously sunny promontory all by myself. I'll post pictures when I get back, and also attempt to get my head in order to properly acknowledge the lovely awards that fellow bloggers have been bestowing upon me. (I find those oddly difficult - I get tongue tied and fretful about saying exactly the right thing.)
It may have taken three months longer than anticipated, but I think it looks pretty darned good. There are a few more pretty pictures to add, but it is now (fingers crossed) fully functional. I would be enormously grateful for any and all feedback, both from an esthetic and a functional point of view.
This week's colour inspiration: Hollyberries (NOT - see below).
EDIT: I have now been informed by 3 reliable sources (4 if you count DH's bookmark in Plants of the Whistler Region, which I keep by the computer but inexplicably did not consult this time), that these are in fact Oregon grapes. Whose leaves look almost exactly like holly leaves, except they are not. I hereby swear before these assembled blog witnesses that I will never again post so much as a blade of grass without checking its botanical pedigree. And because I cannot stand waiting for the rest of the yarn to sell in order to alleviate my feelings of public dumbness, I am going to change the name in the store, DH's protestations of over-reaction notwithstanding. (Those of you who already bought some - I will put both names on the tag so as to make it match up with the invoice.) So there. They're still awfully pretty.
They stray a little towards purple in the highlights, but offset that nicely with some blue-green lowlights, and for the most part, tread the straight and narrow Royal Blue road.
The lace-weight and the merino/silk blend are the most purely jewel-toned this week - as you turn the skeins over in the light, the shades and variations are all there, but very subtly blended.
The BFL has a little more variation in depth and hue:
and the sock yarn has the most of all, alternating the highlights and lowlights round for round:
The new yarn is up over here. We had hoped to have the new site up and running in time for this week's update, but the shopping cart is being stubborn. If and when we meet with success, you will see a redirect link at the old cart, and we will be eternally grateful for any and all opinions and feedback on the new site!
stashed in my little neon green pouch (which I suspect is the knitting nerd equivalent of a pocket protector, but it sure is handy. I even KIP with it clipped to a belt loop.)
The project is a cowl - no real pattern, just enough repeats of Feather & Fan in the round to slip comfortably over my head. The yarn is BFL in Blackberry (tragically, one skein had a knot and I was forced to keep it), with a round or two of leftover Tulip for contrast. Ostensibly I just want to see how far a single skein of BFL will go on 3.25 mm needles, but I'm loving the blazing minimalism of that little red stripe beyond all reason.
Really. I was serious about not weighing myself before the winter solstice and have thus far stuck to the resolution without resorting to hiding the scale. (You can't imagine what hitherto unattained levels of self-control this has entailed.)
The fitness program.... is coming smack up against the realities of life with school aged children. Every year I manage to forget (probably because no one gets so much as a sniffle over the summer) the whole business of winter colds. Every virus in the Sea to Sky corridor (and likely a few tourist-borne imports) sniffles and oozes its way home on the school bus, which means that less than half of any given month is fully productive. Either someone is home from school, or one of the adults is sick and not able to efficiently carry out their usual chores, or (as was the case last week) not quite succumbing to the latest plague, but exhausted and achy just the same. (Not to mention the meetings, special events, volunteering, etc. that crop up frequently but in semi-random fashion). One way or another, any plan that relies on consistent, efficient scheduling is doomed.
So I tried out the principle of Enough and walked when I felt too lousy to run, got in my pushups and Pilates, and began to come to terms with the fact that I have no idea (nor can I realistically predict) exactly when I will get to 100 push-ups or 20 km or minus 20 lbs, but it does not mean that I won't. (You might be sick of me by then, though.) I am still on week 2 of the push-ups program and I wish that muscle strength came more quickly to my physique (but if it did, I would likely be fretting about not liking to bulk up). I had to go back down to level 2 of my running program because, although my aerobic capacity was ready for the increased mileage, my hip and knee were not. Cross training and specific strength training will take care of that.... in time.
This disconnect between effort and results is unsettling. I would much prefer a tidy mathematical ratio; ie. Result = X(Effort) where X is a constant (maybe something to do with Pi and the speed of light.) I can deal with X being small, even tiny, but random bugs the heck out of me. I powered through the dark years of my teens and twenties with a philosophy of "set big goals, grit your teeth, and achieve or die trying," but I am coming to see that there are other ways to move forward, other ways to live. Patience and constancy perhaps?
In a nutshell then, my plan for this week is: Doing what needs to be done right now, not living in the future, not giving up. (There's also something percolating about self-acceptance and not hiding out until the mythical attainment of bodily perfection, but I'm not quite there yet. Elspeth seems to be much further along that road, though her post was a very timely wake-up call.)
These are my absolute favorite berry, with their intensely blue-black skins stretched around wee segments of impossibly sweet juice. While it feels a little odd to pay money for something I used to hack back aggressively in an attempt to reclaim my Vancouver Island yard, we'd have a parade of bears to deal with if we grew them here, so the Farmer's Market will have to satisfy the craving.
It was quite a challenge to emulate such a dark and pigment-rich colourway:
Not only are there the actual colours to tease out, but also the play of light on a surface that is dark AND glossy. The dyed yarn shifts and changes in the light almost as much as the berries themselves, which is undoubtedly evidence of success, but made it an awful lot of work to capture with the camera - I'm still not sure they look dark enough in the photos. All those challenges aside though, I am really pleased with the outcome.
The silk blend does the best job of emulating the reflective properties of the original:
It's a concept I have always struggled with, and for the longest time had no idea that it was a legitimate concept. I'm not talking about consumerism - there's been very few points in my life where I had the financial means to make that form of restraint an issue - rather, the achievement kinds of enough. Good enough, high enough, fast enough, often enough, soon enough, accomplished enough, talented enough, knowledgeable enough, parenting enough, tidy enough.... It's rare that I come to a point in any given day where I set down my tasks and projects and other work with a clear conscience and a genuine feeling that I have done... enough. I used to think it was virtuous and Not Lazy and a safeguard against mediocrity, but now I'm not so sure. Today I cleaned and decluttered my house. All day, and I did not write one new word into a design file or knit one stitch or go to the gym or take a nature photograph or create a single object for sale or fill out any forms or put the buttons on the baby sweater that might already be too small because I am a bad bad friend or even write a proper blog post with nice pictures. But I can see the flat surfaces in my house and the kids' room is liveable again and I am going to try out the idea that that might be.... enough.