Friday, July 31, 2009

socks in july

It's been 55 degrees at night lately--Mr. B is going camping with friends and will have to pack long sleeved shirts and and extra sleeping bag for warmth. Were it not for the birds waking me up at dawn, I'd swear it was October and not July. We leave our windows open for the fresh air, but don't turn on any fans. I wake up fumbling for slippers and a sweatshirt. Pfft. Global warming? Not in Wisconsin.

I just finished Julie & Julia, a positively wonderful book. The Bumble Book Club is going to see the movie and discuss both over apres-film dessert and drinks--I think I've mentioned how awesome my book club is. But the book really got me thinking towards the end about purpose and joy in life and wondering about the routine I feel stuck in these days and how I might infuse it with more meaning. What is it about projects? They give us pride, ambition, satisfaction in ways that other activities do not. Ask any quilter/carpenter/baker/beader/sculptor. Facing raw materials with a vision of a finished product--maybe that's something I need right now. I have enough nebulous projects--parenting, Happyland PTA stuff, restoring the prairie/wetland/woods around our property, a book in progress. But these things are too unwieldy. They're big, cumbersome, long and exhausting. They don't have apparent halfway points or anything to signify "success." I need to tackle something simple, something that will provide gratification and a clear end point.

Maybe I'll knit some socks.

Spill it reader, what project gives you a sense of accomplishment?

24 comments:

  1. my quilting and knitting projects give me that sense of accomplishment.

    they also serve as a reminder that i am not spending enough time finding the joy they bring me when i walk by them sitting in my crafty corner, not having been touched for days and days.....

    think i'm going to see the movie this weekend... still haven't read the book.

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  2. I love making cards. I am even, finally, meeting the task of scrapbooking..it's only and 8x8 album of this years ball season. But you are right, the sense of accomplishment is great

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  3. I knit hats - socks/toes would be too much for me.

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  4. It has been cooler here this summer too, but then the Pacific NW has been really suffering this week. I guess the summer weather has just been redistributed.

    I feel like I've spent the entire summer trying to ascertain my purpose and I'm not there yet. My gardening and blogging both fulfill me greatly, but I suspect there's something else I should be doing.

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  5. I will put that book on my list! Sounds wonderful - and the movie looks good here.
    hmmm...sense of accomplishment? Hard to come by during these summer days with the kiddos home. Running and writing are my two big ones right now, both of which I don't have time for!

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  6. I hear ya on how cold it is! This is ridiculous. It does feel like October... only with the scent of alfalfa still in the air and without the changing leaves. But still. I want - need - summertime up here. It's getting crazy.

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  7. Could you people complaining about the cold just take it somewhere private? It's killing those of us sweltering down South.

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  8. I cannot wait to see Meryl Streep as Julia Child!! She so totally rocks.

    I have been project-less lo these many years. I am a quilter and beader but lost the mojo several years ago and have only done tiny things since. I have heard the muse whispering ever so quietly to me in recent months, though. I have a feeling that one of these days -BAM- the desire to fondle fabric or make something sparkly will come roaring back.

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  9. I'm getting more into cooking as I expand my garden and explore the farmers market more thoroughly. Now that I finally have herbs growing, I can experiment with some fun & simple supper dishes. I really ought to read this book; the movie previews look like fun.

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  10. Love your masthead, just gotta say.

    I'm gonna have to check out that book too. Sounds like it would be good, but I'll wait until after I see the movie. I find that movies based on books are never as good as the books, and therefore are disappointments. Cheers! =)

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  11. I'm a scrapbooking geek. In the past year I did 13 years worth of my daughters dance productions and a book of photos and poems for my best friend that chronicled the first year of her horse's life.

    My next project is to do my wedding and honeymoon pictures (gee whiz, it only took me 30 years to get to THIS project!)

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  12. Scrapbooking. It's awesome to go from random pictures to an awesome book. Good times.

    If you want to take it up, I have supplies...and I know Farmer would love for more people to use them. :)

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  13. I love doing projects with my photographs. I just gave a framed photo mosaic of our vacation to my friend's Danish niece who went on vacation with us. I really love that kind of thing.

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  14. Experiments in crafty, creative sorts of projects and activities have ranged from making jewelry and cake decorating to scrapbooking and pottery. Looking at a pile of stuff or a simple thing and imagining what it might become given opportunity.

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  15. I bought a Better Homes & Gardens book while I was traveling this week for work - and now I'm all in the mood for reworking things in my house to perk up the style to make my house feel more "home-ish". I've never been much of a decorator, and we're renting now so we can do a lot with paint or anything - but I think there's a lot we can do with repainting some of our own things and adding art and stuff to the walls.

    I also want to put some greenery outside on our back patio - there were several articles on people's backyard retreats, and they look so peaceful. I rarely go out back now - mostly because it's too darn hot - but once it cools down some it would be nice to actually enjoy sitting outside.

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  16. We're taking Mom to see "Julie and Julia in a few weeks for her birthday and I can't wait! Meryl looks like a divine Julia C.

    Hazy hot and humid in NC--come on down if you want real summer weather!

    I'm feeling fulfilled if I get one page of writing done, a blog written, or a decent meal made these days. Seriously, I'm tapped out.

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  17. Ooooo. Big points for cleaning off my desk. It does have a surface after all!

    Clearly, I have no life. ;-)

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  18. I really enjoyed J&J too! Projects, hm...taking lots of photos and keeping my blog humming makes me happy. I've not been doing either enough lately but I'm looking forward to diving in again!

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  19. My knitting days are over but I did read Julie, Julia AND My Life In France by Julia child. I can't wait for the movie!
    xo

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  20. This is why I love to paint - not Monet painting - Benjamin Moore painting. It's a physical activity that wakes up my body and it results in glorious, TANGIBLE results.

    Good luck!

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  21. I think that is why I am enjoying my blogging and the focus that it puts onto smaller, "post-sized" events in my life, be it a recipe, craft or just some little finished item on my to-do list. The blog pushes me to get busy and attempt (and finish) the little ideas that float around in my head and keep me up at night.

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  22. I so want to see that movie, and you can send our weather bad anyday. I really miss it.
    If I knew how to knit I'd do it but I've never been able to get anyone to teach me so I craft. Love completing different projects.
    What I find really satisfying is planning little parties or activites for my kids (Not Birthday)more like little adventures (tea party for girls, treasure hunt for boys type stuff)and then participating with them, seeing their faces shine and hearing them talk about it years later.

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  23. I loved My Life in France but I am on page 75 of Julie & Julia and so far just find her to be a complainer. I was going to set it aside and start something else but maybe I'll try another chapter.

    I don't comment much but love your blog!

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  24. I keep seeing the ads for the movie...but your post compelled me to pick up the book while I was out today.....I have no idea when I'll get to it....but I can always get the dvd of the movie someday down the road....because of course I HAVE to read the book first....I'd have to say my blog gives me a big sense of accomplishment....it pushes me to do more things so I can share them with everyone :)

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Spill it, reader.