Unraveled, 1/5/21.

Joining Kat and friends. Go see what the others are up to.

Knitting.

Hat is done. The Zauberball yarn did plump up a bit during an overnight soak, but no one will ever make the mistake of thinking this is Malabrigo. But it fits and will go with both of my winter coats (they are both brown).

Sock #1, seen here lounging on what has become my favorite project bag, is done. Sock #2 is mid-heel. I overdyed the yarn because its original colors were offensive to my eyes. How I did it.*

* Actually, I had forgotten how I tamed the colors. See the linked post for the real story.

Reading.

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Bough Cutter by Jeff Nania. This is the third — and latest, perhaps the last — book in the Northern Lakes Mystery series. It was okay, not great. The author has written a lot of nonfiction; I think his style is more suited to that genre than to fiction. The protagonist is a county sheriff in northern WI, which is why I started this series in the first place. The drama is that Twin Cities, are competing to be the supplier in the North Woods. 3★

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When You See Me by Lisa Gardner. This is the other book my friend retrieved from the Little Free Library. These two, this one and the one in last week’s post, are the only Lisa Gardner books I have read. Apparently they are the latest books in a series featuring an FBI agent, a Boston police detective, and a young woman who escaped from her abductor. 3.5★

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Carville’s Cure by Pam Fessler. The author was a correspondent for 28 years at NPR. This book traces the history of Hansen’s disease and its treatment in the US since roughly 1900, focusing mainly on the only leprosarium in the continental US, located on an island in the Mississippi between Baton Rouge and New Orleans. 4★

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Listening.

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Life’s too Short by Abby Jimenez. After looking at the reviews on Audible.com, I am at a loss as to why I chose this audiobook. It is apparently a romance novel, a genre that I consider one-half step above stage 4 cancer. But it will probably be a relatively quick listen so I’ll go with that.

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Watching.

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Still watching Cold Case. Just started season 5.

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Still watching Bosch on Amazon Prime. Season 5.

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Argo. I had a brainstorm that we could watch Academy-award-winning movies not available on Netflix or Amazon Prime because I could check them out from the library. This is the first one. Great movie, a little thin on what really happened, but fun to watch. 4★

Posted in Unraveled Wednesdays | 8 Comments

Saturday, minus the links.

When I put on my iWatch this morning I got two surprises:

  • The display showed a fireworks display, which made me smile.
  • It also showed that it was -6F˚, which made me shake my head.

Here is our ten-day forecast:

Welcome to winter in the Great Frozen North! First it gets disgustingly cold*, then it warms up and snows, then it gets cold again, then it warms up and snows, then it gets cold again. Rinse & repeat.

Too bad I don’t have any warm woolens to wear

* I love to complain about the weather, but I actually love winter. When I was a teenager — and mega-stoopid — I would go skiing every weekend, no matter what the temp. My mother thought I was crazy. As an adult, I welcome autumn because it means I can start dressing in layers again. Plus, winter is the most beautiful season here, imo.

Posted in Winter | 7 Comments

Furry Friday, 12/31/21.

Posted in Furry Friday | 6 Comments

Unraveled Wednesday, 12/29/21.

Joining Kat and friends. Go see what the others are up to.

Knitting.

Hat is soaking. Cross your fingers that that plumps up the yarn.
First sock in its current state of un-doneness. Notice contrasting toe and heel.
(There is green somewhere in this ball of yarn, I promise.)
(Also, I will sew up that hole at the corner of the heel.)

Reading.

Yeshiva Girl by Rachel Mankowitz. I started this one last year in the Kindle app on my iPad, but didn’t finish. This time I got into it. I found it to be a hard read because it was a memoir of teenage hormonal angst compounded by a pedophilic (and possibly psychopathic) father, plus sexual abuse. It is a very good book, however difficult it is to read. The narrator is the author when she is fifteen. She is pretty sure she is a pariah, or should be, given her self-loathing. Her father moved her to a co-ed yeshiva school because he didn’t like her old, public school; she is miserable in both places. She struggles with her religion and its many, many, many rules that make no sense to her. (She is onto something there.) She is pretty sure her grandfather is the only person on earth who loves her. 4★

Never Tell by Lisa Gardner. A friend gave me this book after plucking it from a Little Free Library near her house. She said someone often puts brand-new books in it. It will be donated to the library next time I go in.

Anyway…

This is a murder mystery wherein the victim’s wife is found staring at her husband’s corpse and with the gun in her hand. (Of course, she didn’t kill him.) This is another one in the Plucky Woman in Peril genre, but the writing in this one lifts it above some of the others. 3.5★

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The River by Peter Heller. Two Dartmouth undergrads, best friends, go on a canoe trip on a Canadian river that flows to Hudson’s Bay. Both are experienced outdoorsmen, but several things go wrong: a huge forest fire is headed their way, they pick up a battered woman, and her husband and two other guys have them in their crosshairs. (Besides mystery novels, I also like wilderness stories.) 3★

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Listening.

The Last Thing He Told Me by Laura Dave.

Protagonist’s husband disappears but leaves behind a note for his daughter and another for his wife (stepmother to daughter), plus a duffle bag full of cash. She becomes a PWiP as she sets out to discover what hubby was doing that required him to disappear and leave behind a fortune. 3★

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Watching.

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Cold Case. A team of detectives in the Philadelphia Homicide Squad investigate cold cases (cases that have remained unsolved for months — or decades). We are currently watching season 4, so we are over halfway through the 7 seasons. 4★

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Bosch, season 4. Amazon Prime is annoying because it doesn’t remember where I left off, in contrast to Netflix, which does. (Okay, just discovered that Prime does remember if I were watching on my computer. Why does it not when I am watching it on TV? Kurious Kat™ wants to know.)

Posted in Unraveled Wednesdays | 2 Comments

Links on a Sunday, 12/26/21.

From a friend’s obituary: “She made teaching of Romeo and Juliet, To Kill a Mockingbird, Maya Angelou and even grammar, fun and interesting. Her classes were highly sought after by students, knowing that her wit and humor would make English their favorite class of the day. Years ago, her students complained about having to memorize Robert Frost’s “Stopping by the Woods on a Snowy Evening”. She had her then 3-year-old son… memorize the poem, and recite it in her classroom to her stunned students. They stopped complaining.”

Speaking of obituaries

<digression> I am thinking of writing my obituary. Have any of you done that? I am not ill nor suffering from a progressive and fatal disease*, it’s just something that occurred to me.</digression>

On trends.

* Actually, we all are suffering from such a disease: it is call life.

Posted in Links, Uncategorized | 4 Comments

It’s Christmastime in the city everywhere.

The night before Christmas ala Hemingway.

Florida woman.

Posted in Animals, Christmas | 4 Comments

Furry Friday, 12/24/21.

Dogs in snow. (Not at all like dogs in elk p1, p2, p3. The last three links go to pdfs; you may need to magnify them on your screen to be able to read them.)

Read all the way to the bottom.

Posted in Furry Friday | 2 Comments

Rants, 12/23/21.

Posted in Rants, various | 5 Comments

Unraveled Wednesday, 12/22/21.

Joining Kat and friends. Go see what the others are up to.

Knitting.

The Sockhead hat is nearly done, only 2″ to go after the beginning of the left-most blue stripe. I am using Schopper-Stohl Zauberball Crazy in 2332 Sanuhr, which has surprised me by being only a 2-ply yarn and awfully thin. I am hoping that it will plump up some when I wet-block it. Even if it doesn’t, the hat will still be warm enough, given that the most I am ever outdoors any more is between the house/store/restaurant and the car. (The colors are more accurate in last week’s post. Apple’s photo editing function does not seem to work well when I tried to desaturate the picture. The yellow and blue are more subtle in real life.)

Reading.

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Good as Dead by Susan Walter. A woman and her husband are struck by a hit-and-run driver; she survives, but with many injuries, he does not. An anonymous *guardian angel* pays her ginormous hospital bills, moves her into a multi-million-dollar home, pays for her daughter to attend a prestigious (and pricy) private school, and generally gives her a free ticket to anything she wants. I spotted the ending twist halfway through the book, although that did not spoil anything. 3★

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No Ordinary Life by Suzanne Redfearn. Story of a struggling single mother with three children; husband is a long-distance truck driver and periodically disappears. One day her youngest, a spunky 4-yo, is filmed while dancing with a street performer; the video goes viral and Hollywood comes calling. 4-yo, and eventually her older brother, become TV stars. It turns out that the Hollywood life is exhausting and domineering. Mom is prone to bad choices, which makes her a bit difficult to like, but she fights for her kids. 3★

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The Beekeeper of Aleppo by Christy Lefteri. This is the story of a Syrian beekeeper, his wife, and their young son on their flight from Syria to Yorkshire, where they plan to join his cousin who escaped Syria before they did. I am not sure why people recommend this book. Although the story is sad and told with excellent detail, I found it rather boring… or at least, not enthralling. YMMV. 2.5★

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Listening.

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The Last Thing He Told Me by Laura Dave. This one falls into the Plucky Woman in Peril genre I described last week. Husband disappears after SEC raids his workplace, PWiP is left to care for his 16-yo daughter, who despises her dad’s second wife. I haven’t gotten far enough into this one to give it a rating.

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Watching.

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Still watching Cold Case. Just started season 4. Smokey especially enjoys this show because of the soundtrack. Every show features music from the year of the cold case being investigated. He even found a website that identifies all the songs in every episode.

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The Great British Baking Show /Bake Off. I binge-watched the last half of the newest season. My favorite baker was Crystelle, pictured at left with the judges and my least favorite host. All three bakers in the final were excellent, and I want to taste all their dishes! 4★

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Bosch, season 3. Amazon Prime failed me a week or two ago when I tried to start season 3; I could not call up episode 1, kept getting season 2. But this week I persevered and figured it out and binge-watched at least half of season 3. I do like this show! 4★

Posted in Unraveled Wednesdays | 6 Comments

Fiber Monday, 12/20/21.

Gandalf knits!

A sweater returns to its maker.

“Bra-makers sent us to the moon.

Darning: it’s the new LBD.

Posted in Fiber Monday | 2 Comments