Three on Thursday :: street art

Street art is a really big thing here. There are even guided tours that take you to places you wouldn't be able to find on your own. I want to take one of those tours someday, but for now I'm just taking pictures wherever I find these paintings.

linking up with Carole Knits' Three on Thursday

Right now

Right now I am...

:: so happy to be on Curaçao again
:: finally (after 5 days) feeling synched with local time. My jetlag was serious this time!
:: enjoying our first sunny day. It rained an awful lot these past few days.
:: smiling when I think about the forecasters that told us to expect some 'minor flooding in the usual locations on the island'. Typically Caribean relaxed way of coping with things that cannot be changed.
:: laughing at ourselves because we fell in and out of love with a 300-year-old monumental building (second and third picture) within two days of arrival. We looked at it, loved it instantly and started dreaming about all the possibilities. And then we found out how much bureaucracy we'd have to deal with... Hmn. Nope.
:: smiling because on Saturday we found another, much more realistic dream home
:: keeping my fingers crossed that we will be able to buy it (need to sell the Dutch house, officially move to Curaçao and get a mortgage approval before we can put an offer in)
:: having mixed feelings about jumping in so quickly. But oh, it's such a beautiful house! (last picture)

52 hats :: 35 - 39

I've been going back and forth between doing one post for each hat, because that's what I've done sofar, but these hats aren't the most creative. I just don't have that much to tell about them.
So maybe this is a better way to catch up on the hat making. Most of these were made some time ago. The last one took almost four weeks and I started a new one, but I just don't pick it up enough to make any progress. Oh well... that's life, I guess.

Anyway, on to the hats:

# 35 - Green Slouch (again... I had lots of this yarn). I knit this one during my husband's surgery.

# 36 : Soulemama's pattern again. The second hat I knit on surgery day.

# 36 : simple hat, great yarn.

# 38:  same hat, same yarn, different color

# 39: real, rustic wool. Love this hat, but it wasn't easy to knit with. This one took me four weeks to finish...

Catching up

The house has been officially on the market for a week now. We (and our realtor too) expected a lot of viewings in the first week, but we were wrong about that. The first viewing will be next Saturday. Maybe more people will come that day since it's 'Open House Day' (meaning a lot of houses for sale are open to visit without making an appointment). We'll see. It's a bit disappointing, but we keep telling ourselves that we need just one buyer.

My days are busy, editing jobs, keeping the house as clean and organized as possible, preparing for our trip to Curaçao. I try to savor the moments in this house, enjoy the last time those purple flowers will be mine, stop to admire the sunsets that are so beautiful this time of year. We've both got mixed feelings about it. We're ready for the change, but since it's going so slow our farewells are longer and more painful than we anticipated. We lived here longer than in any other house (in our 28 years of marriage, this is our fifth house and we've lived here for 14 years) and we love it so.
But now that the weather is changing, T.'s coughing gets worse again and that is a good reminder of why we're doing this. His heart condition is more or less under control, so we are grateful for that.

I've been doing a lot of thinking about how I use my time. There are so many things I want to do. I need more hours in a day and more days in a week. Or maybe I just need to prioritize. So, even though I'd like to participate in blogtober and post every day, I think I'm going to do a weekly catching up post. I may take time to prepare some hat posts, I have some catching up to do on that too.

I'm not sure if and how I will continue with the 52 hat challenge. My notes tell me the hat I'm working on is #39, so I'm not far behind, but I won't be able to knit on Curaçao since we plan to travel with carry-ons only and I don't have needles there. Should have left them behind on our last trip, but didn't. And even though I planned to be way ahead before we left, I have hardly done any knitting these days. Oh well, it's just for fun, isn't it? (I have to keep telling myself that, I tend to get too serious about these things)

One of the reasons that I haven't done much knitting is because I've been reading a lot. I discovered Susan Colleen Browne and love her books, so I've been reading them all. Her memoirs (Little Farm in the Foothills and Little Farm Homegrown) are fun to read. She and her husband moved to the country to live simpler and start a little farm. The fact that they're close to our age and that she's a writer too made her story even more relatable for me. But I also like her fiction, a series of mostly romantic books and stories, set in a small Irish village. (If you like to try these books, the first one is available as a free download on Amazon.)

linking up with Jeannie Gray Knits' Makers' Monday and Small Things' Yarn Along

These days

Finding time for blogging and knitting is hard these days. Life right now is chaotic, messy and full. Not all bad things, luckily.
Though there has been another big session of hospital knitting. We spent five hours (!) last week at Emergency. I won't start ranting about that day, but most of that time was spent waiting for help, not actually getting any. Oh, and the cardiologist (an intern) let it slip that it's quite common for a new arrhythmia to appear after an ablation. Well, they didn't tell us that before we decided to go through with the procedure...  My husband was really close to not doing it because of the risks involved and this information would have made up his mind - what's the use of poking around in your heart and burning cells if it's 'common' to be back at square one within weeks?

Anyway, we are adjusting now. He's taking natural medicine to keep his heart rate low and that seems to be working. He rests when he feels tired or weird and we're trying to pick up our lives where we left off.
Which means our house will be on the market next week. That is if I manage to clean and organize and weed the last tasks on my todo-list away, while T. takes care of the last repairs. I have lots of emotions and thoughts about leaving this house and my garden, but at this point, I can't find the right words for it.

And honestly, I don't have time for it either. This post I'm writing after finishing some computer work (of course I got a editing job that needs to be done... um, as soon as possible), but I should be organizing photos, cleaning out closets, weeding the garden or something like that.
But it's been bothering me that I didn't post anything for two weeks, so there you go.
I'm not sure when I'll be back. You might expect things to calm down when the house is on the market, but my experience in the past six years is that moving house is always a complete chaos in our family (always two at the same time, or sickness, or travels in between) and I'm quite convinced that this one will be another one of those. We've booked a trip to Curacao on October 10th, so I guess there's a really big chance we need to empty the house before that. But that would mean it sold quickly, so no complaints here.
And the other possibility of chaos, my husband's health... well, I'm trying to ignore that fear. Don't ask how that's working for me ;-)

Thanks for all the well wishes on my last post. I'm sorry that I'm not really reading and commenting on your blogs these days, but I'll try to pick that up again. I'm hoping on Curacao I'll have plenty of time to sit down and catch up.

Okay, time to go. Wishing you all a great week!

Last week in pictures

Well, actually just Friday in pictures, but that was what this week was all about. I spent the day knitting at T.'s bedside (except for three hours when he was in surgery). I actually finished two hats and started a dishcloth. It was a long day...
Anyway, everything went very well. They found the problem, fixed it and he is feeling better than he's been feeling for a long time. He was discharged on Saturday morning. We're both taking the rest of this week off and away from the computer/internet to rest and heal (my ear is still acting up).
Wishing you all a great start to your week!

52 hats :: 34 - this yarn

Oh, I love this yarn so much! This shade of blue is my favorite (like the sky on Curaçao) and combined with that greyish brown... oh my. Yes, I love it. I figured it just needed to shine on its own, so I made a very simple hat, that I love just as much as the yarn itself. I may have found myself a new keeper...

A to-do list

Three things I need to work on today:

1. decide what yarn to use for my next hat (told you, I should stop buying yarn - or find better storage)

2. clean up this mess (this is what's left of our former bedroom after we took out the bed and the wardrobes)

3. work on those photo albums

Oh yeah, and prepare for tomorrow (T's surgery). But I prefer not to think too much about it. This surgery is supposed to be routine, but it scares the hell out of me... Anyway, trying to avoid thinking, or blogging, about that. I'm scheduling tomorrow's hat post to keep on track and I hope to be will be back on Monday to tell you I was just worrying too much, like I always do when loved ones have medical issues that I can't take care of myself.

Linking up with/inspired by Carole Knits' Three on Thursday

I can't be trusted around thrift stores...


In my defense: those photo albums were on my list. I need to downsize my rows of large albums into something that will be easier to move and store. That's why I went to the stores in the first place because I knew you can find lots of photo albums, most even unused for a fraction of the price you pay for new ones.
The hairpins, well didn't actually need them, but I only have a few elastics and it would be nice to do something else with my hair than just braid it out of my face.
Two dresses and a t-shirt... or actually two t-shirts and a dress, since one of the dresses is so short I'll probably wear it with jeans or thicker leggings. Okay, I do have enough to wear. But it still fits into my closet with ease, so I thought I'd get away with it. My husband likes it when I wear nice clothes, so it's not just for me (I'd probably be in leggings and wider dresses if it were just my decision). Oh, and one of the dresses still had the tags of the real shop on it, so for 5 euro that was a really good deal, I think.

But the yarn... hmn. I need to knit faster. A lot faster. Because the basket is overflowing right now.
And that planner... Totally uncalled for. But so typical. I tend to buy planners and notebooks when life gets crazy and/or scary. I guess it gives me the reassurance that I can handle things as long as I have the means to write it all down (I hardly ever do - who's got time for that?).
I was very happy to find the filofax perforator though because that means I can start designing and printing my own inserts again. You know, since I don't have anything more important to do.

I was also looking for two small chairs for the bedroom. Didn't find any that fit the bill, so I guess I still have some more thrift shopping to do in the future. Oh my...

Last week in pictures

Last week... Goodness... that was some week! So busy. But I don't have many pictures to show it, but I was too busy to take them. There was a lot of work on the computer. Bookkeeping (catching up after a few weeks of letting it go) and editing. And then there was the house. T. did most of that, but I'm the one holding and handing stuff, so a lot of time went into that too.
But. We finished the technical space, moved the washing machine in there. That freed up space for a dishwasher in the kitchen, so we ordered one and T. installed it right after it arrived. I'm not sure if I'll use it every day (we try to save on electricity/gas bills and have to work out the difference between using the dishwasher and heating water), but it was a lifesaver this week.
The rest of the week was spent on the back room.

We left off here two weeks ago:

But this week we cleaned it up,

added wallpaper

and a laminate floor

and then we hung some curtains and moved in (also got a new bed)

I think I'm going to do a big 'reveal' post with better pictures and some befores once it's really finished and decorated, but I really wanted to show how far we got this week. We still have a long list of small things to finish, but the big renovation project is done. So happy about that.

Oh. Knitting? Um, yes. A little bit, while working on the house (hence the filthy jeans)

This week?
A little bit of editing that needs to be finished this week and hopefully some writing.
But mostly cleaning and organizing. I won't show pictures of the mess in the rest of the house. It's just too much. And then there's the shed and the garden and... well, I've got my work cut out for me.

Edited to add: Well, it seems this week (and the next) will be a little bit different. My husband just got a call that there was an opening in the hospital's schedule. His operation will be this Friday. So glad we've got that downstairs bedroom ready!

Linking up with Jeannie Gray Knits' Makers' Monday

52 hats :: 33 - it really is my favorite pattern

Yes, it's that pattern again. I'm not going to apologize for it, I just like knitting it. It's like talking to an old friend or something like that.

I did something funny a few weeks ago. I have this beautiful notebook that the girls gave me for Sinterklaas years ago. I started using it as a knitting notebook after months of not knowing what to do with (didn't want to ruin it, but most of my notebooks end up like a mess, tearing out sheets etc.). The first year of notes is 2015 and I sort of kept it up through the last years. But I thought it was a shame that the years before that were missing.
So one lazy Sunday I browsed through my blog archives and took notes of every knitting project I posted. Starting with the red cardigan and working my way through 12 years of blogging. Oh my.
I know there are some projects missing from the blog (like the hats I made for a friend and her family and my first shalom cardigan), but at least now I have a bit of an overview.
And at least now I was able to count how often I actually made this hat.
This is number 25.  Ahem. No wonder I can knit this without thinking about the pattern too much...

Adding to the stash

Because my time, budget and storage are limited, I have this rule for myself that I can't go (thrift) shopping for yarn unless I'm completely out of it.
I'm not, obviously.
But this morning I was in a few thrift shops, searching for something else and I happened to run into some yarn. So I decided my rule didn't apply here. I mean, my time wasn't wasted, since I was already there. The basket can handle just a little bit more yarn (I hope) and for a total of Euro 4,50, it wasn't exactly a big chunk out of my budget.

Or maybe I'm just making up excuses now. Anyway, I'm happy with it. The shiny yarn on the left is really beautiful and I think I can make a shawl with it (it's two skeins). The rest will probably end up as hats, though I'm also thinking I have so many shades of grey* now, that I could make an ombre shawl or maybe even a blanket.
I do love that about having a bigger stash. Dreaming up projects, making plans.
Good thing I didn't find what I'm looking for, so I'll have to visit a few more thrift shops soon...

*nope, no reference to that book. I didn't even read it