Last Friday morning I felt as if a tight set of strings inside me went suddenly slack. I woke with not-too-much-pressing to do, an unusual state of being for me. Later, at about 9 in the morning, a luxuriously late hour, still in my pjs and sipping my third mug of coffee, I realized that if I didn’t dress until noon, no one would notice and life would go on quite nicely. Such a fine state of affairs.
For the past few weeks I have not had much time to follow up on details, or finish off projects. I certainly haven’t had time to clean the kitchen floor (still haven’t done that — just on principle). But a week ago Wednesday, six volunteers and I bagged 1,685 books and 337 pencils to give to the students we have tutored this school year. That work was the culmination of several weeks of furious activity — ordering, worrying, calculating, sorting, cataloging, and packing — begun back in April.
Also that Wednesday, I finished knitting an afghan that I began in October 2009. It is for Kate and the yarn is the same difficult-to-photograph color she chose for the walls in her room. This is the third afghan I’ve knit using this particular pattern. It is warm and heavy to sit under when knitting after making any sort of progress on it, and so I did most of the work in the late fall, winter and early spring over the last three years. I enjoy the pattern, mostly, but I am glad to be done with it. Don’t quote me on this if you see me knitting a fourth one within the next year or two, but I think this is the last one of these I’ll be knitting. Regardless, that was another loose end, all tied up, in part thanks to the unseasonably cool weather brought to us by early June. Good weather for huddling under an unfinished afghan in spare half hours here and there, knitting as rest after long days of book-sorting.
Last Friday, sensing the unusual gift of time, copious amounts of time, buckets and buckets — or so it seemed, relatively speaking — I set myself to the task of tying up a few more ends.
We have known for a few months that Kate was attending a chamber music camp in New England for several days in early August. We knew that if we were going to have a family vacation piggybacked onto taking her there or bringing her home we needed to make reservations. For ourselves and for the dog. Bruce teaches the day she leaves, so I’m driving her, and I made the reservation for an overnight at a B&B for me to break up the journey there and back well over a month ago. I also booked the same B&B for two nights toward the end of Kate’s camp experience for Bruce and I to enjoy each other’s company and in case there are recitals to attend. I had not confirmed that there would be then, but Friday I did just that. Also, Friday, after an hour of research or more, I booked a hotel to stay at for the return trip via four days near the ocean. Done! Even the dog is booked into doggy daycare on one end of the camping event and boarding for several days at the other. All that is left undone is the car rental reservation for the initial trip with Kate. One car family here, still clinging to that quirk!
I even found time to clean up all the plastic pots and seedling trays left from that frantic bit of gardening I accomplished a few weeks ago. They had been cluttering up the garage and basement, waiting for a window of time. After that, I wound some yarn: Nautilace and Brooklyn Tweed Loft, two recent purchases, both destined for cardigans. I put away knitting needles and yarn leftovers from a few recently and not-so-recently finished projects, including the afghan, and got out the size needles I need for the cardigans, all the while reducing, or at least managing the clutter in the home office.
There is a lot more to catch up on, more ends to tie up, including that kitchen floor. This week, however, I am a single parent and dog owner in addition to my other responsibilities. Bruce is grading AP Statistic exams in Kansas City for eight long days. He is no doubt having the time of his life because he loves that sort of thing. And Kate and I are at loose ends, making do without him for this little while. No complaints so far.