Unraveled Wednesday, 8/11/21.

Joining Kat and friends for Unraveled Wednesday.

Knitting.

Behold the marvelous thing I received! Qiviut!

Andrew (Elder Son) and Amanda (wife) — remember, they got married in March — went to Alaska for four weeks (honeymoon!?) and routed their return journey to spend a week with us in Wisconsin and to see friends in Minneapolis. The first night they were here they were so excited to give us the gifts they had brought from the Land of the 24-hour Sun.

When they went to Iceland last year, I told them how Icelandic yarn was even sold in the grocery stores there, but that they should not buy me any yarn because I already have too much. And they didn’t; instead they brought me a pair of super-warm wool socks.

But this time Andrew reminded me that they were not supposed to buy me yarn, but they had decided to disregard that.

They brought me a skein of qiviut!

I am pretty sure they knew how pleased I was because I kept petting it for the next hour evening day. And then I searched Ravelry for the perfect cowl pattern and cast on. This is a very simple lace pattern, but after a couple rows I realized that any lace pattern would be completely lost in the feathery, downy halo of the qiviut like this one. So I went in search of another pattern. Or I may simply knit the cowl in stockinette with garter edges. No matter what pattern I may use, the cowl will be softer than kitten fur.

In lesser news, I finished another blue hat. August 1 was the deadline to send in hats, and I hadn’t finished this one by that date. So now I have a head start on the 2022 Blue Hat project!

The Great Red Blob continues to languish, constantly sending me reminders that when I knit the last ten or so rows of the neckline I will have another expanse of mindless stockinette. And then I can wear it.

Reading.

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The Great Mistake by Jonathan Lee. I found this book to be boring. I kept waiting to discover why exactly the author had felt drawn to tell this story about a rags-to-riches New Yorker who was shot and killed on his own doorstep at age 83 in 1905. There are too many books out there to waste time on this one, so I quit halfway through. 2✭

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I Never Promised You a Rose Garden by Hannah Green. I think I requested this book from the library after I finished Hidden Valley Road, the book about the six out of twelve siblings who developed schizophrenia. Rose Garden has been around roughly forever but I had never read it nor known what it was about. I started it but only got about five pages into it when I decided I was not interested. So many books, so little time. 2✭

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The Great Quake by Henry Fountain. Back in June Smokey and I were chatting about Andrew’s and Amanda’s upcoming adventure trip to Alaska. Eventually the topic turned to the Good Friday (1964) Alaska earthquake, which both of us remembered hearing about at the time. We read about it in Wikipedia, and I requested this book. The quake, at 9.2 to 9.4 on the Richter Scale, is the strongest ever felt in North America and the second strongest in history. (A quake in Chile in 1960 registered 9.4 to 9.6.) This book, written 2017 by a geologist who studied the earthquake in depth, traces the quake, its causes, and its aftereffects. The first third is the geology/geophysics of quakes, the middle third is about the Alaska quake specifically, its victims, and its survivors, and the final third is more about quakes. In 1964 the theory of plate tectonics was a new and still controversial idea. Here is a short video produced by the US Geologic Service that summarizes the research findings.

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Our House by Louise Candlish. This book was a bit hard to read because of the suspense and tension that builds up in the reader. A woman in London comes home to her up-scale home in a better area of London to find other people moving into it. Turns out her husband had sold it for £2 million because he needed the money to pay off a blackmailer. The tension comes as the reader does not know if the wife can recover her house or the funds. All that being said, this is one of the better books I have read this year. 4✭

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The Fire Witness by Lars Keppler. This is the third book in the Joona Linna series, about a Stockholm police detective who doesn’t take orders well. Well written, although the translation renders the prose rather flat. But since I do not read Swedish, I am just happy that the books have been translated at all. I thought there were only three books in the series and was sad; turns out there are eight (8!) books in the series… and best of all, they are all in my library system! I foresee a bit of a Lars Kepler binge. In this book, Joona Linna accidentally stumbles across a couple murders far from his territory; even though he is forbidden to investigate it, he does. (See, “doesn’t take orders well”, above.) Even after the official police statement says that the girl suspected of the murders has drowned, Linna keeps going and finds her. 3✭

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The pace of my reading has really picked up this year. As of August 1, I have read 55 books, plus one in progress. Back in the aughts when I volunteered at the library I read nearly 100 books per year, but since I got an iPad that number has declines to about 75. Surfing the internet, doncha know.

Watching.

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Still watching X Files, recently finished season 9, season 10 is waiting to be picked up at the library. Number 10 has only 6 episodes and was created 5 years after the series was originally canceled. Season 11 has 10 episodes. So, by Labor Day we will have to find something else to binge on.

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9 Responses to Unraveled Wednesday, 8/11/21.

  1. Kat says:

    Oh my gosh… that Qiviut! That will be one gorgeous cowl! What a lovely gift! The Great Quake sounds like a fascinating book! Thank you for bringing that book to my attention!

  2. Kym says:

    What a fun cowl — made even more fun by the gift yarn from your thoughtful son and daughter-in-law! As always, I love and appreciate your book reviews.

  3. Gayle says:

    Oh what a cowl you will have! Love and kitten-softness rolled into one!

  4. Vicki says:

    Isn’t Qiviut super warm, too? So luxurious… what a wonderful gift!!

  5. Yay qiviut! I have loved the cowl and fingerless mitts I knit from qiviut. It’s so soft.

  6. Quviut!!! I want to say it fast ten times. OH it will be magnificent. What a great gift

  7. Mary Jo says:

    You lucky mom! I have dropped hints and even sent a website link, but have not squished any yet. I even have a cowl pattern picked out. It’s Simple Yet Effective by Tin Can Knits and it’s free on Ravelry. I have made it a couple times in different sizes when I needed a mindless knitting project. Enjoy your cowl!

  8. Ann in NJ says:

    I knit my daughter a cowl from a Quviut/merino 50/50 blend and it was definitely the softest thing ever. Yours must be completely dreamy, you lucky thing.

  9. Ann in NJ says:

    p.s. – I used the Geo Cowl pattern, which came with my skein. A little texture, worked well with the halo. https://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/geo-cowl

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