The end of September was sneaky – I didn’t quite realize it had happened, so this post is a bit behind schedule. It’s okay, of course. I enjoy writing these monthly highlights posts and seeing how all of my little habits have added up over the last 30 days.
On the first Wednesday of the month, I will share this post with Ginny at Small Things for her Yarn Along link up. It’s a monthly gathering of readers and knitters who share their current projects. On the 15th, Anne Bogel at The Modern Mrs. Darcy will host a QuickLit link up. You can find hundreds of devoted readers sharing their new and notable books for the month. Please visit both of them to fill your TBRs and knitting bags!
Favorite Books This Month
It was another light-ish reading month for me – I finished 8 books. I’m finding that it’s still really hard to finish physical books, so I’m leaning on audiobooks again. And that’s okay – the 8 books that I finished were all really amazing and these are my top 3.
All The Devils Are Here is the latest installment in the Armand Gamache series and didn’t disappoint. The novel is set almost entirely in Paris, which almost felt like a vacation for me. Well, except for the murderers hiding around every corner. Louise Penny is a master at describing food and creating the coziest settings, as well as pinning down human behavior in the most eye-opening and heartbreaking ways. I am still in love with this series!
I know nearly nothing about Shakespeare, but Hamnet still captured my imagination and my soul. This is the fictional story about the death of Shakespeare’s son. It is beautifully told, with memorable scenes and characters. My favorite character is Agnes, Shakespeare’s witchy wife. The audio version is an excellent choice!
The Orphan of Salt Winds was an enjoyable Kate Morton-esque novel. This is Virginia’s story, told in her perspective in multiple timelines – present day, and in 1939 after she was adopted by a couple who lives in a cozy cottage at the edge of a saltmarsh just as WWII is beginning. Family secrets and broken hearts are at the center of this story.
As always, you can see my Reading Log here on my 2020 Reading page.
Habit Tracking/Traveler’s Notebook
I did a lot of notebook shifting in September. I’d been using a Hobonichi Weeks from January until August, but decided to start writing all of my daily entries in my 5 year journal instead. In September I worked hard to transfer all of my daily entries from my Hobonichi into my 5 year journal, which was actually a lot of fun. I loved re-living a lot of the memories that I wrote down and I can see how amazing it’s going to be as I add more memories over the next few years.
But that left me unsure about what to do with my Hobonichi Weeks. I had been habit tracking for so long that it almost felt perfunctory and not very helpful anymore. I thought it would be fun to try something new when Mary posted a picture of her Traveler’s Notebook weekly insert. Once it arrived, I was taken back to my Hobonichi Cousin days and fell in love all over again. I’m loving this new set up!
I love tracking how I actually use my time in a more holistic way. I can see the “holes” in the day, which are usually the times when I’m doing my most intense parenting. I should think about a way to acknowledge that in my notebook in some sort of positive way.
I finished my Spark Cardigan in September! I’m wearing it as I type this and I can’t describe how warm and squishy it is. I’m totally in love with it and am looking forward to starting another one at some point. The pattern is addictive (sans belt)!
I finished two Jubilee Hats this month – one for Birdie and one for Bug. This is another Andrea Mowry pattern and so fun and, well, squishy!
I resumed work on two lingering quilts. The Scrappy Crossroads quilt is pieced and I just need to finish quilting, trim, and then bind it. I’m so close! But the project that I keep gravitating to is my english paper piecing hexies quilt. It’s handsewn and, even though there’s still a ton of work to do on it, it feels like the end is in sight.
It was another perfect month for morning pages – I journaled every day! I used to think it was impossible to write in my journal 7 days a week, especially the weekends. I’m finding that journaling is most important on the weekends and I prioritize it over everything else in my routine on the mornings that I sleep in.
I’ve said it before, but journaling sets the tone for my entire day. It’s almost like making the decision to make your bed every morning – there! That’s one good decision. Now let’s start a chain reaction. When I start my day with quiet, calm reflection, I can more easily use that energy when the kids start waking up and my day of work really begins. Yes, it’s crazy early. But I always have a hot cup of coffee at my side, which makes the whole process much easier. It also helps to see all of my pages add up – rows and rows and pages and pages of handwriting is so cool to flip through. It gets my stationery-loving heart beating like crazy! I’m going to be exhausted at the end of the day no matter what. I might as well find a way to ensure that I have a couple of hours to myself!
Bear Turned 7!
My beautiful bouncing baby Bear turned 7 this month. It’s quite bizarre. He has such an imagination, enjoys telling jokes, and can lap the house faster than you can blink an eye. He’s also still willing to wear my handknits and I’m very thankful for that. And him. I’m oh, so thankful for him!
Pictures from September
September was hard in a lot of ways, but it was also full of some amazing things. Flowers, reptiles, insects, dirt pits, cookies, pizza, woolens, lots of reading and learning. And for me, lots of early morning time alone with my notebooks and computer. October, we’re ready for you!