Yes, I'm still alive! I don't quite know what happened or why I haven't posted before now. I've certainly thought about it a lot, but never quite mustered the momentum to sit down and write. I will do it now, and hopefully it will make it easier for me to start posting regularly again.
I think part of the silence was that our summer was very nice. Who knew that a summer without a bar mitzvah, an international trip, deaths, broken bones, and family issues could be so nice? About halfway through the summer I noticed that I was in a good mood compared to the summer before. What a revelation! I did a lot of knitting, spinning, and running this summer.
It was just an ordinary summer. Sr. Jr. spent 2 weeks at cycling camp down in Charlottesville, which he LOVED. Two weeks with a bunch of kids who loved cycling as much as he did and professional and semi-professional riders and coaches. He was in heaven.
We spent July 4th weekend with my father and his wife, along with my brother, his girlfriend, and their dog to celebrate my father's 75th birthday. Again -- we had a surprisingly nice time. Travel to and from the Hamptons was shockingly unpainful. Everyone was pretty mellow and had fun.
We went back to Hilton Head again for our summer vacation. We rent a house pretty much on the beach and ride bikes, go for long walks, play golf, go fishing, spin, knit, relax.
The school year has started off well. Sr. Jr. seems to be adapting to his first year of high school very well. First quarter report cards are going to be mailed out tomorrow, but so far he knows he has straight As (although there's one grade he doesn't know about yet). He's not working too hard at it, either. Friends of mine who've had kids go through this high school have complained about how much homework their kids had and how hard they worked, but Sr. Jr. seems to manage it all just fine.
Jr. Jr. is in his last year of elementary school. When he starts middle school next year, I'm going to feel really old. On the other hand, I'm ready to be done with our elementary school, for many reasons. Mostly, I'm ready for Jr. Jr. to mature a little bit more. He's funny and smart and cute, but a little bit on the immature side. I think that changing schools and having more expected of him will help.
The big family news is that Sr. Jr. will be joining a junior elite bike racing team after the new year. Up until now, he's been riding with Mr. T's team, which is more like a club than a team. It's a great group of people, and they support each other very well, but each rider is really on his own as far as development and racing goes.
The new team is just for juniors, with a coach who puts all her efforts into developing junior cyclists into strong riders. She plans their training and their racing with an eye to getting them into big races and Nationals, and eventually to be noticed by professional teams.
I don't know how any of this will pan out for Sr. Jr., but he's talented and committed. I think just being on a team with other kids will be good for him.
But now we've reached the time of year when there's so much going on that I don't get enough time to knit or spin and get a little cranky. Hopefully it won't last too long.
(Jr. Jr. just got home, so I'm going to fast forward, and get to the pretty pictures)
Things I've knit and spin since my last, long-forgotten post:
Stripe Study shawl:
Variance Cowl (with handspun yarn):
Orange Pekoe socks (Cookie A sock club):
Calendula Socks (for Camp Loopy):
GUSH socks (yeah, bad pic):
Fat Cat Knits Esther (spinning):
Squoosh Polwarth (spinning)
Fat Cat Knits Spinach Souffle (spinning)
A shawl I named "Cranky Bones" because I was sick of knitting it (pattern name was Boneyard Shawl; knit for Camp Loopy)
Southern Cross batt (Red Plum):
All Spun Up merino/alpaca fiber (love this -- currently spinning more of this for a sweater):
I took that yarn and knit a hat for Mr. T (Windschief), which has been deemed slightly too unboring for him and is modeled here by Sr. Jr.:
I finally finished Drifting! I'm not sure if I like it, and I still don't have any pictures of it on me:
Grave Clothes (Two if By Hand fiber, wish I'd spun it differently)
And last, but not least -- Space Invaders (fiber from Bee Mice Elf):
Sooo, that's what I've been up to for the last 5 months.
Coming soon (really, I promise) -- what I'm working on NOW :)