Previous month:
February 2014
Next month:
April 2014

March 2014

Right Now . . . March 2014

March . . . came in like a lion.  And, pretty much, it STAYED like a lion.

Until Sunday.

On Sunday . . . Spring showed a glimpse of what's to come!


(Garden Buddha is wholly visible.  Finally.)

What's happening in my world . . . RIGHT NOW?

Watching . . . Spring roll in!  Ever so slowly . . . but coming.  Birds.  Light.  Glaciers receding.  (Also basketball.  But just the exciting parts at the end.)

Reading . . . The Luminaries by Eleanor Catton.  Just what I'm in the mood for right now, which is a very good thing, as this is (yet another ) of those 800+ page epic novels I tend to be inclined to read.

Knitting . . . A gift . . . Canyonlands . . . for a special mentor in my life.


Listening to . . . John Legend.  Who will be coming to Kalamazoo to play as part of the Gilmore Keyboard Festival in May.  (And guess who got tickets?  Yeah!)


Dreading . . . Mud season.  And Jo Jo.  (But mud means "the winter of our discontent" is over.  And I'll take that.)

Planning . . . Gardens.  Projects.  Spring chores.  (Hope abounds)

Humming . . . Summertime Sadness.  (I'm afraid it's good and stuck.)  (I'll spare you.)

Wondering . . . Why my desk can't stay clear and organized???


Drinking . . . Oberon.  A sure sing of spring here in Kalamazoo!

Itching to . . . Find out what survived in my garden this winter.  And what did not.  (I know there will be casualties.)

Needing to . . . Finish the damn taxes.

Organizing . . . I'm making drastic changes in my wardrobe.  Drastic.  (This subject deserves an entire blog post.  Maybe two.  Stay tuned.)


Delighted by . . . My vertical fern garden -- a find from the Chicago Flower and Garden Show earlier in March.


Inspired by . . . Alabama Chanin.  Enough so . . . that I've dug out the kit I purchased on the Alabama Chanin website two years ago.  The kit I was so intimidated to try . . . that I stuck it back in the far reaches of my craft closet without even breaking the seal.  I'm ready to give it a try now.  (I actually opened the plastic wrap and took it out to look at just this week.  Baby steps.)


Celebrating . . . Jenny's leash restriction is over in a couple of days!  She's doing great -- and more than ready to run.

How about YOU?  What's going on for you . . . Right Now?

She Said It: Week Four


"The future depends entirely on what each of us does every day; a movement is only people moving."

--- Gloria Steinem


Gloria Steinem

Earlier this week, Gloria Steinem celebrated her 80th birthday.  How awesome is that?  (Click here to read my story about meeting Ms. Steinem.)


March is Women's History Month.  Celebrate the legacy of women's words with me here each Friday during March.

I Feel it in the Air

Soundtrack . . . 


No secret.  It's been a really cold. . . 

really snowy . . . 

extremely long. . . 

Winter in the Great Lakes region.


I'm kinda done with it.

I'm ready to move on.

I've got a bad case of . . . Summertime Sadness!


Oh, my god . . . 

I feel it in the air.

Could it be spring?   (Keep your fingers crossed!)
(Although . . . snowflakes this morning.)


(Click here for details on Ravelry.)

One of Those Easy Weeks


Sometimes . . . when I open the Ten on Tuesday email from Carole . . . I have to really think and think to come up with my list.  Other times . . . it's just EASY.

This is one of those Easy Weeks!

Because . . . reading . . . is what I do.


(One of my favorite reading places.  Although I have to fight Jenny for it.)

The Last 10 Books I've Read:

  1. The Luminaries (Eleanor Catton) - Still in progress, but so far . . . worth the slog (at over 800 pages).  Nice and Dickensian.  (And I love Dickens.)
  2. Hunting and Gathering (Anna Gavalda) - Marvelous!  (Although if you are a big fan of plot-driven novels, this might not be for you.  If you love character studies . . . dive right in!)
  3. Book of Ages: The Life and Opinions of Jane Franklin (Jill Lepore) - Solid.  Interesting.  (Especially if you're a fan of women of the Revolutionary War era.  And I am.)
  4. The Good Lord Bird (James McBride) - Wonderful . . . in that Huck Finn kind of way!
  5. In the Shadow of Blackbirds (Cat Winters) - Well-done young-adult fiction (which I always find slightly tedious, for some reason, even when it's well-done).
  6. Gift from the Sea (Anne Morrow Lindbergh) - A re-read for me; an inspirational book about the changing phases of woman-hood.  I was inspired to pick it up again after reading . . . 
  7. The Aviator's Wife (Melanie Benjamin) - Nice and solid.  I kind of love Anne Morrow Lindbergh; it's interesting to read her story (even though this one is biography-laced-with fiction).
  8. The Man in the Window (Jon Cohen) - A delightful, quirky love story with some interesting twists!  (I thank Carole for the recommendation on this one.)
  9. The Flamethrowers (Rachel Kushner) - Meh.  I struggled through this one.  Big time.  (Still trying to figure out what the fuss is about.  Anyone????)
  10. The Spinning Heart (Donal Ryan) - I loved this book.  So. Much.  What an interesting way to tell a story . . . (check it out for yourself and see!)

How about you?  What have you read lately?


Join the fun!  Read other Ten on Tuesday posts here, or sign up for weekly prompts here.

Paradigm Shifts

Last week at the Chicago Flower & Garden Show, I was thrilled to find this year's exhibit* from Women's Journeys in Fiber --  Paradigm Shifts: Impressions of Change.

Each artist was to create a shift-style dress as a canvas to represent a paradigm shift in her life, science, politics, or religion.  The results were stunning!

This artist (who we got to meet and chat with at the show) created a "shift" to show the "shift" from 50s housewife (her mom) to today's woman (her daughter).  The front of the shift told the story of the 60s through the present . . .


While the back of the dress told the story of the 50s housewife. . .


A gardener told the story of her shifting garden -- from generic lawn to lush flower beds!


And a life-long seamstress depicted her shift from dressmaking and tailoring (on the back) . . .


to an exploration of quilting and experimental stitching techniques (on the front)!


There were several weavers . . .



a knitter . . . 


and many fascinating looks at history, and several poignant political statements. . .


This one contrasts images from fashion magazines with newspaper articles about the textile factory fire in Pakistan that killed more than 300 people.

One of my favorites . . . 


was completely made of words!


Her shift told the story of the power of love (in both English and Korean).


So many shifts!


So many stories!


Such a powerful exhibit!


For me -- surrounded as I was by flowers and gardening ideas, and inspired by color everywhere -- the shifts were the best part of the the day!

Click here if you'd like to see more of the shifts and read some of the artist statements.


*Last year's exhibit featured shoes, and the year before, it was aprons.

Balm for the Soul

I always love going to the Chicago Flower & Garden Show!  The timing is just perfect to brush off the winter cobwebs and start thinking about spring.

But this year?  Ah, this year it was double-y (no, make that triple-y!!!) wonderful.


As soon as Sandie and I stepped in to the Navy Pier exhibition hall . . .


we were overwhelmed (some might say downright giddy) from the smell of fresh flowers and trees. . .


and we realized how starved we were for color!


We had a wonderful day in Chicago -- filled with inspiration, education, and a bit of shopping, too.  I'll share more in the blog-days ahead.


For now, let's just say that being surrounded by plants and flowers . . .


was balm for the soul!


Honey, Let's Just Stop and ASK Someone


It was such fun to think about divisions-of-labor last week . . . that Carole has us doing it again this week.  Only in reverse!

I asked Tom to help me with this week's list . . . Ten Things I Do That He Could Do -- But Doesn't.


Here's what we came up with:

  1. Laundry
    Tom:  Sorting?  Folding?  Why bother?
    Kym:  Care labels = required reading.
  2. Household paperwork, including bill-paying, taxes, and deadlines
    Tom:  I have a PhD in organic chemistry!
    Kym:  (Can't fill out a form to save his soul.)
  3. Packing his suitcase
    Tom:  You're just so much better at it than I am.
    Kym:  That's because I fold things.
  4. Wardrobe approval
    Kym:  Tom is colorblind.  (Very colorblind.)
    Tom:  Colorblind means never having to say, "It clashes!"
  5. Wrapping presents
    Tom:  Why bother?
    Kym:  Again, it has to do with folding.
  6. Home décor including where to hang things on the wall
    Tom:  How about here?
    Kym:  Are you freakin' kidding me?
  7. Managing the social calendar, including which cultural events we'll take in
    Tom:  Mixed Martial Arts is coming to Wings Stadium!
    Kym:  Too bad.  We have opera tickets that night.
  8. Menu planning
    Tom:  Meatless Monday again?  Isn't it Thursday?
    Kym:  Yep.
  9. Making the bed
    Tom:  Why bother?
    Kym:  Neat covers = sweet dreams.
  10. Asking directions
    Kym:  Let's just ASK someone.
    Tom:  [mumbles under breath]

How about YOU?  What do you do . . . that your significant other could do, but just doesn't?


Join the fun!  Read other Ten on Tuesday posts here, or sign up for weekly prompts here.