Slow start to 2018

January 15, 2018

A belated Happy New Year to you all.

Everyone is in organizing/diet/exercise mode. I'm slowly, but not enthusiastically, getting on the bandwagon. I truly took advantage of the twelve days of Christmas, and knit and read and ate leftover Christmas treats in front of the fire well beyond Epiphany.

Well, after all, I was recovering from bronchitis.

But we did finally get all the Christmas decor taken down, and a good cleaning done. I have been organizing and decluttering this week and thinking about new paint colors and furniture for our living room. I am happily pinning ideas.

My vision includes key words like comfort, romantic, glam, and cozy. Taupes, creams, blush. Lots of candles, pillows, throws. And always books. It's been so cold out that, in between the necessary chores and errands, I just feel like hibernating. The room I am envisioning would be perfect for that.

It's snowing again, and as I have nowhere to go today, I will be building a fire early. I have a large knitting project (a cardigan, my first attempt at a sweater) and a book for book club to read, so after my short to-do list is done, I will be sitting cozy.

We have a huge, beautiful yarn store nearby, with a wonderful owner who is helping me with my sweater.

This gal, camouflaged very nicely in my faux fur throw (can you find her little face?) has not been very helpful. She loves to be in the thick of things.

Progress so far . . . 

Winter is really so much nicer when you don't have to go out in it. However, once in a while, there's something worth braving the cold for.

Like this wonderful coffee house, filled with books and antiques and comfortable couches and chairs. We spent a cozy couple of hours here enjoying tea and sweet treats with friends.

Mr. Beautiful, chatting with a friend, in the lower RH corner.
We had just been to the art institute to see a Monet/Church exhibit.

This pic does not do the painting justice. It's Jerusalem from the Mount of Olives by Frederic Edwin Church (1870).

Hope you're staying warm and cozy. I'm thinking hot chocolate here.


  1. Oh I look forward to seeing your finished sweater...I am finishing knitting up a boneyard shawl, a Ravelry free pattern, and plan to try socks next...a sweater will be far off in my future. I do love a great wool and yarn shop.
    Staying cozy and knitting by the fire is pure bliss!

  2. I am so glad you are recovering well and planning your makeover. The cafe looks amazing, a lovely place to meet up with friends and relax. Beautiful knitting.

  3. Your little friend sure is in the thick of things! I love the color of your sweater. Wow I haven't made one in years and they usually were baby sweaters. Glad you are feeling better and your room renewal sounds like a fun project. I don't think I mentioned this to you, but how amazing it was when our pastor "happened" to preach a sermon on the rare jewel of contentment last week -- some good insight--and our book club is later this week!

  4. If I didn't have to go to work, I'd go into hibernation. I love the pretty purple colour of your new knitting project. I was thrilled when I heard that the Pantone Colour of 2018 was "Ultra Violet." For once, this purple fanatic is on trend! HA!

    The coffee shop looks charming. Naturally, my eyes gravitated towards the teapots.

  5. Cozy is key, especially when living so far north as you do! Glad to hear the bronchitis is subsiding. That color will be gorgeous on you, Deborah, and the vision for your room sounds very complimentary too. ;)

  6. Love the rich color of your knitting project and your furry helper! :)

  7. Your sweater is looking great, and I love the color. Happy New Year to you!

  8. Beautiful sweater! What's the pattern?

  9. Cozy is key in this kind of weather, especially since you just recovered (completely?) from bronchitis. The kitty looks very cozy indeed. Had to pin her pictures to my Pets board. I am in awe of your knitting skills. The sweater will be beautiful with your pretty hair. The coffee shop would be worth braving the elements to visit. xoxo

  10. Hi, Deborah! Sounds like you have embraced the chill of 2018 with just the right plans: knitting, warm surroundings and planning ahead for warmer times! Stay cozy and comfortable. I'm so glad your illness is behind you.
    Rosie @ The Magic Hutch
    P.S. Your sweater looks like it will be beautiful: absolutely LOVE the color

  11. Beautiful knitting. Something that I have consistently failed at, but I do so appreciate hand knitting. I too am a total believer in dragging out celebrations for as long as possible, especially birthdays.

    1. thanks for the comments on my blog, Deborah. When I figure out how to do blogs that I follow, I'd love to put yours on.

  12. I'm admiring your knitting. So pretty. I wish I could have a few slow days. No need to rush the season - I think you're tackling it just right. After all, you were ill.

  13. Dearest Deborah,
    Glad that your bronchitis did eventually go away.
    Knitting for your area is a good thing. Here you hardly wear the heavy woolens.
    It is cold however but the few woolen sweaters I got for that is plenty.
    Reading is a great pass time thing to do. Catching up on lots of things.
    We had a performance on Saturday, with our choir, as you might have found on my FB. Someone managed to post a video of it and one of the spunky members (2nd eldest!) captured our voices with her cell phone held to the sight.
    It was a perfect winter event and a welcome outing. We did go to Atlanta for 2 nights in hotel and met with the Dutch people at one of the members' home for a postponed New Year's celebration. It was a warm and lovely gathering!
    Going back home and doing first our Costco. Trader Joe's and Whole Foods Market round.

  14. I just finished a big mug of hot chocolate, plus 2 slices of buttered toast, for supper. Not much dieting going on here! Your new living room sounds just wonderful! Please do post lots of before/after photos for us! We can enjoy your transformation, without experiencing all the chaos, haha :) Stay warm up there. I know your winter is so much scarier than ours.

  15. Your sweater is going to be oh so pretty. It did take awhile to find your kitty perfectly camouflaged in the blanket.

  16. Hi Deborah,
    Glad to hear you've taken a relaxing road to your recovery! It all sounds wonderful, staying in by a fire, knitting and reading books!!! I've retreated as well....not a fan of the cold at all. Your color scheme sounds so pretty...I've been thinking about paint and redecorating too! So much to see on Pinterest! I love the color of the yarn you are using for the sweater! I really envy anyone who can knit and/or crochet. I'm just not very good at either but want to be!!! Hope you post a photo of the finished sweater! Stay warm and cozy my friend! xx

  17. You talk about a slow start to the new year ... me too! I'm just getting back into the swing of things.

    I so enjoyed your newsy post about what you've been enjoying as you recover your strength and health. That kitty cat of yours is a real ham, hiding like that. So sweet.

    I am envious of your visit to the art institute ... wonderful art to see. Loved those two you shared.

    Wishing you a beautiful week ahead, with joy and grace!
    Brenda xox

  18. It is the time of year for decluttering and staying cozy indeed! I like your color selection for the new colors for your living room! Cozy is important! And that sweater that you've got on the needles is gorgeous! It will be all the more lovely with kitty's help, ha! I know just how helpful cats are... not! LOL The antique/coffee shoppe is a wonderful idea! How clever of the owner to combine the two! To sit and look at items you want until you just break down and buy them, lol! And those paintings are magnificent, how wonderful to be able to see them in person! Happy hugs to you today :)

  19. I’m glad you are feeling better! That color you are doing your sweater in is beautiful! I’m looking forward to the progress.
    I know what you mean about hibernating. We have had some especially cold weather for the mid-Atlantic region this winter, and I even brought some extra real blankets to our family room as the throws just weren’t enough. Enjoy your cosy time!

  20. Yea for you in recovering from your bronchitis, Deborah! I guess it was a way for you to slow down and enjoy the comforts of your cozy home.
    Your sweater is going to be so gorgeous. I look forward to seeing the finished product!
    I read your book on my flight to Ohio, and really enjoyed it. You are such a thoughtful, and gifted writer, my friend. xx

  21. I am so happy you are feeling better. Yes I too have been organizing the house and cleaned out my linen closet yesterday. What a mess that was. LOL. I did manage to go to the gym on Monday and that was nice too. I love curling up in the afternoon with a good book to read. I can't believe how fast this month has flown by already. Stay warm and take care.

  22. Dearest Deborah,
    So, just finished your book!
    You are such an excellent and very detailed writer; compliments on that. After all, you studied journalism so that is only natural to see good results.
    But the book is great for anyone, being depressed or not.
    It paints the differences we ought to be aware of in our own surroundings and lend an 'ear' or support others in seeking professional help.
    Thank you very much for spreading your experience and knowledge for others to use.

  23. Oh! I want to go both places! I'll bet you're not in southern Missouri though, are you? Now that I'm getting beyond the beginning knitter stage, I'd love to go to a yarn shop. I don't know of any around here though.

    Blessings to you!

    Laura of Harvest Lane Cottage

  24. Wow, what a yarn store!!!! I would be in heaven if I had anything like that near me!!!


Thank you for visiting! I'm truly delighted to hear from you.