Unraveled Wednesday – Week 38 of 2020

Happy Unraveled Wednesday, friends! On Wednesdays I link up with Kat at As Kat Knits to share what I’ve been reading and knitting. Please visit her and the other bloggers participating! This week I have one lovely book to share and some progress on my Spark Cardigan.

Finished Reading This Week:

“When men fear the loss of what they know they will follow any tyrant who promises to restore the old order.”

Unsheltered by Barbara Kingsolver
I could have sworn that this book was published this year, but was definitely wrong about that (!). It was published in 2018. Time flies. I enjoyed Unsheltered a lot. The present day story line was set in 2016 during the crazy primaries and focuses on Willa Knox, a freelance writer trying to keep her struggling family afloat. The story flashes back to the late 1800s, where we meet a high school science teacher, Thatcher Greenwood, who insisted on teaching science (not religion) and his neighbor, the naturalist Mary Treat. These two stories are tied together by a home: the house that is crumbling around the Knox family in 2016 was already falling apart in the 1800s while Thatcher lived there. There’s some symbolism here.

Kingsolver tried her darndest to figure out how so many people managed to vote the way they did in 2016. And she did it in an empathetic and compassionate way that made me stop and think. If you’re still puzzled by the way the election turned out, you might enjoy this book. I really enjoyed learning about Mary Treat, an actual naturalist who exchanged letters with Charles Darwin while she was engaged in her independent scientific research. I mentioned lately that naturalists are showing up everywhere in my life right now… here’s another example!

(PS: Willa Knox’s daughter is a knitter and I’m pretty sure there’s a nod to Elizabeth Zimmerman’s Baby Surprise Jacket!)

I was hoping to be able to share another finished book with you this week, but I have three books in the works right now. I’m typically a monogamous reader, but I have a feeling next week will include a glut of finishes which sort of stresses me out. But please know that I am reading some fantastic books that I can’t wait to share!


Friends, I decided to just get over the boredom of the thing and work on the belt for my Spark Cardigan. Now that work is being done on it (yes, passive voice), it is actually growing! I use the passive voice because it’s so boring and requires no thought at all. I am literally walking around with it while supervising play time in the yard. Knit, slip, knit, slip, knit, slip, knit, slip, all the live long day. Each day that I work on it, I move the stitch marker up to my starting point to see that I’m actually making progress on the blasted thing. I haven’t measured it yet because I don’t want to be discouraged by how much is left. I know that I’m nowhere near the 74″ needed, so I’ll keep on with the knit, slip, knit, slip, knit, slip, turn, slip, knit, slip, knit, slip, knit. You get the picture. My goal is to finish this sweater by the end of September. Please oh please!

I can’t wait to catch up with everyone’s projects this week! I hope you all have a great Wednesday!


26 thoughts on “Unraveled Wednesday – Week 38 of 2020

Add yours

  1. I haven’t read the book (yet) but it sounds excellent. And this win’s the prize as the understatement of the year: “There’s some symbolism here.”

    And good luck with that belt! Surely there’s some symbolism there…;-)

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I think your use of a marker to show you that progress is being made is going to help a lot, because this is definitely one of those instances where you can get stuck in a knitting black hole. I hope that because it’s relatively mindless, you’re able to keep doing it and it gets done soon!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It’s made such a difference! What’s most amazing is how quickly the inches have added up once I actually work on it. But it’s still hard to find enough motivation to focus!


    1. Thanks Laila! I saw your Goodreads review after I posted my own. You’re right – she’s a little preachy, but I think she was trying to hold back here. And I think she tried really hard to create sympathetic characters, like her father in law. I haven’t read all of Kingsolver’s backlist, but I’ve enjoyed everything that I HAVE read by her!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. We should start a chant for you and record it: “You can do it! You – can – do – it! – You – can – do – it!” Good luck!! The books sounds really interesting and I am wondering if Mary Treat might be the model for the protagonist in Elizabeth Gilbert’s “The Signature of All Things” …

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for cheering me on, Julia!

      I haven’t read The Signature of All Things yet and don’t know very much about it. And I haven’t read ANYTHING by Elizabeth Gilbert, can you believe it?!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. It happens – I haven’t read popular authors because I didn’t like the hype. 😉 I really liked The Signature of All Things, and yes, I also liked Eat Pray Love, I didn’t find it as kitschy as some people said (didn’t watch the movie though)

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Good idea to mark your progress each time you knit! Knitting is always just . . . one stitch at a time. I always wonder why some projects just seem to be so much more “sloggy” than others! (Because some seem so much more tedious than others.) Hang in there — and think about what a fabulous sweater you’ll have when you’re finished.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I can just picture you carrying around your knitting during some of the play time – all the live long day. Hang in there- you can do it. I read Unsheltered some time ago. Kingsolver is a good writer.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. That book sounds really interesting! So it’s a novel but based on real people and events? Kind of crazy think of “historical fiction” being written about 4 years ago.
    Ohh wow I didn’t realize the Spark cardigan had a belt. That definitely sounds like perfect do other things knitting. I’m looking forward to seeing the finished product.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Well, maybe I’m wrong about “historical fiction.” I gave it that genre because of the flashbacks to the 1800s, but some people might disagree with me! But it’s mostly fiction, with some characters who were based on real people and events. Clearly I’ve mucked up this description!! :p

      The Spark Cardigan has been so much fun to knit. Until now!!!!!


    1. How interesting! I read The Poisonwood Bible in high school and could definitely benefit from rereading it. I don’t remember anything about it except that it was about missionaries and one character had a name that was a palindrome (Ana? or Ada?). And I’m not even sure if that’s accurate!


  7. I love how you’re thinking about that belt in the passive voice. and I’m still wishing that the knitting elves will visit in the night and you’ll find it magically finished some morning 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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