Life, My Months, Reading
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October 2022: bird friends, beauty grooming, and holding on to the light

Three photos of a seaside landscape and a white boathouse, in the first sprinkle of winter.
Three photos of a seaside landscape and a white boathouse, in the first sprinkle of winter.

Outside

Cats fighting, waking me up. A floating log that looked just like a person. Two people in a small boat, fishing quietly at dusk. Snow on the mountaintops again. Snow on the ground again, and on my herbs and lavender, too. A tiny bird, sitting a meter away while I held my breath so I wouldn’t scare it. Three ducks following me home from the mailbox (they got some bread for their friendliness). The eagle is back. The sun, for what might have been the last time this year for me. The moon, spectacularly bright. The day I suddenly noticed it’s getting darker at five o’clock. Then four. Then three.

The almost-full moon, shining like a small sun in an otherwise deeply blue evening.
The almost-full moon, shining like a small sun in an otherwise deeply blue evening.

Inside

After a summer of abundant daylight, the time had come to fetch all the winter lights from storage: the remote controlled-candles, the beeswax candles, the bunny lamp, the moon lamp, the extra table lamps, the special daylight lamp. I also reactivated the night shift yellow screen on phones and tablets, changed to thicker curtains, located all my wool garments, and swapped summer shoes and outerwear for the winter versions.

I got a cork board for my sewing room, where I’ve pinned some fabric swatches (for the aesthetic!), some small tools, and also notes for certain steps of my sewing so I don’t have to keep all that information in my head. I still have not tried the overlocker, but at least I watched a lot of YouTube videos about it.

Tidying my desk, making it ready for NaNoWriMo (that’s National Novel-Writing Month, which takes place each November).

An iMac on a rather tidy white desk, placed between a curvy lamp and a spiky plant.
An iMac on a rather tidy white desk, placed between a curvy lamp and a spiky plant.

Making

More knitting on my blue sweater. Only the sleeves left to go now, though my wrists rather hate me at the moment, so I’m restraining myself.

A massive triumph was finishing the covers for the little two-seat sofa mum and I started re-covering in… it think it was March? The sofa itself has been done since April, but the two back pillows somehow utterly defeated me. In the end I did that thing where you simplify your plan and go for good enough, and I finished them in two measly sittings. I’m sure there’s a lesson there somewhere. At least it’s now done and deliciously teal, and my living room feels much nicer now.

Potato wedges, sprinkled with parmesan while they’re piping hot.

Close-up of a knitted sweater-in-the-making, on top of a basket of knitting tools.
Close-up of a knitted sweater-in-the-making, on top of a basket of knitting tools.

Thoughts

I had a nice little aha-moment when it dawned on me that this weird urge I’ve had to create more beauty routines, to take better care of my nails and hair and such, was (shocker!) something that came from outside myself.

Here’s the thing: I’m very particular with who I follow on social media. Anything too looks-oriented, diet-y, heavily #influenced, or that just makes me feel bad about myself, is decisively unfollowed and/or blocked. That strategy works well for me, but also made it trickier to spot that this increased focus on beauty grooming is a trend with a definite uptick right now.

For instance, over the course of two days I heard three separate people (from wildly different lives) mention how getting their nails done was a “small luxury” that made them feel better about themselves “even in sweatpants”. I’m not saying it’s wrong to feel this way, or to want to get your nails done — I’m merely saying that if you, too, suddenly find yourself with eleven tabs of nail oils open on your phone, maybe you, too, have been subtly #influenced.

A corner of a room with an ornate lamp and a velvet chair, the golden light inside contrasting against the blue outside the window. A clock shows 5:30 pm.
A corner of a room with an ornate lamp and a velvet chair, the golden light inside contrasting against the blue outside the window. A clock shows 5:30 pm.

Reading

Watching

Listening

A sewing machine on a desk by a window, with teal fabric ready to sew.
A sewing machine on a desk by a window, with teal fabric ready to sew.

Wearing

Mum-knitted wool sweaters again. My seagull shawl. Rubber boots. The fluffy winter hat. Compression gloves. My shiny viscose blouses. A short, sharp bob again, at last.

Memories

Funny texting and emoji-reactions. My doctor acknowledning how much work I’m doing to deal with/live with my health issues. After a famous comedian made super-original (/irony), quite demeaning comments about ME-patients: reading the encouraging comments from people who know better, urging us ME’ers to hang in there. Another café trip. First time sewing since this spring. The first snow, magical as always. A date with the moon.

The early winter sun, partially behind clouds, and a naked tree in the foreground.
The early winter sun, partially behind clouds, and a naked tree in the foreground.

3 Comments

  1. Guðrún says

    It is getting cozier and cozier! Congratulations on finally finishing the pillows, I can not wait for the overlocker escapades!

  2. Bonnie says

    Anne With an E is one of my go-to comfort re-watches whenever I’m feeling down or disheartened – it never fails to make me feel a little more content and a little more optimistic. Congratulations on finishing the pillows, and good luck with the overlocker!

  3. Cookie says

    Your photos are always stunning, and in a way I haven’t seen before. I can’t put my finger on it. Oh, I’ll just ask you.

    Can’t wait to see the finished blue sweater, (whenever that will be), and I can’t wait for the next post! Thank you for writing, and for sharing.

    PS: I really hope that the log was not in need.

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