The Summer That Has Been

Traveling

While the Optometrist and I haven’t done a great deal of traveling this summer, we did make our way to the Kansas City area a few weeks ago to visit my kindred spirit and college accountability partner Megan. She, her kind husband, precious little boy, and friendly kitty treated us to a wonderful weekend of rest, food, shared conversation, and a tour around their fun town.

I finally found a Little Free Library and just couldn’t resist sitting down to read through a Curious George book.

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Megan, “life with you is half as hard and twice as good.”

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Knitting

In my last post I was most excited to have conquered the skills necessary to knit socks, and here they are! The Optometrist surprised me by ordering these nifty sock blockers from Squire Country Crafts on Etsy. I also completed a little (cheater) bow-tie, one of his birthday gifts. He looks so dapper when he wears it!

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And a wee bit of Christmas knitting: the selected ornament I’m knitting for family and dear friends this year is the Square Snowflake pattern, free from MillaMia via Classic Elite Yarns.

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Music

Over the past several months we have joined a ragtag group of musicians on Monday evenings to share a meal and then sing and play together. It’s increased our musical confidence as the Optometrist and I learn our newer instruments – him on mandolin, me on guitar. Our group has a lot of fun playing through classic country, rock, and a little bit of everything in between: Johnny Cash, Hank Williams, Patsy Cline, Alison Krauss, Vince Gill, Elton John, CCR, the list goes on.

A few weeks ago we hosted our group in our home: five guitars, a bass, a ukelele, and a mandolin…and I was the only girl. I kind of rock.

Speaking of rocking, ohmyohmyohmy! Last week we had the opportunity to see Nickel Creek in concert. A-mazing!

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We’re both mega fans of virtuoso mandolinist, and recognized musical genius, Chris Thile. Even though the venue was standing-room-only, we toughed it out and had a tremendous view of the stage. I’m always so impressed with the musicality and precision of bluegrass musicians, and the trio of Sara Watkins, Sean Watkins, and Chris Thile did not disappoint. Their newest album they’re touring, A Dotted Line, was just as accurate a portrayal of their skills and abilities as they demonstrated in their live show. We can’t wait to see either them again, or another Chris Thile project – Punch Brothers or one of his classical duet works…his choices are diverse and refreshing as a listener.

Reading

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Our library has undertaken a campaign for the new academic year to show off Librarians doing fun things we enjoy. I didn’t want to have to choose between knitting and reading, therefore, I couldn’t resist the urge to grab both my copy of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone and my current Hitchhiker knitting project and deftly pose for my photo.

With reading on my mind (ha!), my summer reads have spanned YA, inspirational fiction, and murder mysteries:

Hollow City – Ransom Riggs
Delicious! – Ruth Reichl
Insurgent  – Veronica Roth
Allegiant – Veronica Roth
Four: The Transfer: A Divergent Story – Veronica Roth
The Sweet By and By – Sara Evans with Rachel Hauck
Softly & Tenderly – Sara Evans with Rachel Hauck
Love Lifted Me
– Sara Evans with Rachel Hauck
Bridge to Haven – Francine Rivers
Post-Mortem – Patricia Cornwell (first in the Kay Scarpetta series)
Body of Evidence  – Patricia Cornwell

Delicious! was the favorite book I read this summer, with the Sara Evans “Songbird” trilogy following closely behind.

And now Friday awaits, complete with reading to a local elementary school class of 1st graders, getting my hair trimmed, and journeying to my in-laws for the beginning of what I hope is a long, Labor-less weekend. Saturday we traverse on to Branson, our favorite get-away, where we will reunite with my parents over the later part of the holiday weekend.

All things considered, it’s been a wonderful summer!

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