Gearing up for spring

There’s snow on the ground, more forecast for later tonight. But… we have cut pussy willow branches in water, sitting on the kitchen counter (lovely fuzzy pussy “paws”)… and the Gardener says the forced bulbs should come up soonish. I’m looking at recipes for fastnachts and Jeck cookies. And there has been a little bit of prep for Valentine’s Day.

Once the sleet melts, maybe I’ll have a look outside again. But I’m uninterested in searching for anconites under the snow while sleet is still pelting down.

snow drops for hint of spring
The snowdrops aren’t here yet, but the yellow aconite is underneath sleet right now.

How about you? Are you in the mood for spring, or are you enjoying every second of winter sports and freezing ice in interesting shapes?

Current Knitting – 2019

Now that I’m finally back from my cold…. I finished off a hat (begun in 2018) near the beginning of January. And now I’m on to a pair of socks….

The hat is the Hervor Cap from Viking Patterns for Knitting. Ravelry pattern link here. Oddly enough, the pattern makes a hat that’s a little bit too large for me, and maybe a little bit smaller than expected for my recipient.

My new cast-on project are socks, using a pattern I turn to again and again – the Madder Ribbed Sock from Nancy Bush’s Knitting Vintage Socks.

I think I’ll probably make the Hervor Cap again and again, maybe working on how the top of the pattern looks…. Although, all the reverse stockinette (purling) was a bit boring. The cabling was wonderful fun. Yarn was great too (Stonehedge Fiber Mill Shepherd’s Wool Worsted) So I wonder, what knitting pattern do you return to again and again?

Advent Calendar Day 21

Day 21 is a visit to the Strathmore Sculpture gardens. It’s a lovely place to visit, especially before a Baltimore Symphony Orchestra concert at the Strathmore Arts Centre right outside of Washington, DC. I hope to go back and enjoy the inside of the museum associated with the garden, since they have juried art shows, and other art exhibits indoors. If you’re visiting DC without a car, both gardens, mansion and the music venue are easily reached by a Metro stop.

Bird bath by unknown artist. Strathmore Sculpture Gardens, Bethesda, Maryland.

We’re getting close to the final days of Advent. Yes, I didn’t provide art every day like planned, mostly because work got in the way. We’ll see how much I get scheduled before I have to focus on further house staightening to hide evidence of Christmas prep. Here is bonus footage from a Baltimore Symphony Orchestra performance. (It shows tour footage from when they got to perform in the UK.)

Advent Calendar Day 20

Jade display from the Crow Museum of Asian Art

More information, and better pictures of the ewer that is on the right in the photo, here: Crow Museum of Asian Art. The ewer is a Qing Dynasty piece, made of Nephrite. Probably dates to the 19th century. The Crow Museum of Asian Art is an unexpected jewel in Dallas: perfect place to cool down on a blazing hot day. [Edited to fix advent day….]

Advent Day 6

6 crows a flapping….

To see the image online, go here to the Brandywine Museum. The image itself is by Andrew Wyeth. It’s a tempera painting from 1943 called “Osborne Hill (Crows in a Landscape)”. And it’s LOVELY. Unfortunately for me, I need permission to put it up on my site. But linking to the museum’s digital copy seems to be OK.

An additional treat for Advent Day 6 because I can’t put up the crows, check out Jamie Wyeth’s beautiful, sympathetic rendition of Nureyev in “Half Smile, Nureyev (Study #20): http://collections.brandywine.org/objects/12018/half-smile-nureyev-study

And I did not know that the interactions between Nureyev and Wyeth were made into a play. But now I do, and so do you.

Art Advent Calendar – 2

Modern Stained Glass Window, Kölner Dom

Modern stained glass, Koln DomPhoto of Southern Transept window in Kölner Dom (Cologne Cathedral). The Cathdral also has an Advent Calendar. You can access it here. The original window that was in the South Transept was destroyed during WWII. The modern window (reglazed in 2007) was based on a design by Gerhard Richter. If you want to learn more about it and see better photos of other windows from the cathedral, visit the Kölner Dom website.

 

Art Advent Calendar – 1

December 1

On the first day of Christmas my true love gave to me,
One lady reading…

Oil painting of woman reading by lamplight. Woman bends over book in front of her with shoulder turned to viewer. Lamp illuminates her outline.
Lady Reading by Lamplight, 1895, by Minerva J. Chapman.
National Museum of Women in the Arts, Washington, DC

If you’d like more information about Minerva J. Chapman, check out this brief bio from Smithsonian Institute. Her work is still available, if you have cash on hand. Dreamy work: Pence Gallery.


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