Life's Little Details: Knitting, Sewing, Green Living, Frugal Living and Cooking In A Little Corner of Southern French Countryside.

Friday, March 30, 2007

From A Distance

Sometimes, it can be good to take a close look at the things in your life that make it worthwhile. Other times, it is best to stand back and see things from a distance. We should do a little of each everyday.

Kids are a great example. There are moments, like when they are playing some fascinating game whose rules are only clear to them. There are few things in life a parent can truly enjoy more than sitting out of sight to watch the imagination of their child at work. Then, there are the other moments - the moments where it's better to get right up there with them to be sure you don't miss a single detail. This first shot is a prime example of that. I found this hat while organizing baby clothes. It's been very windy lately, so I pulled it out. It's great for covering sensitive baby ears. Unfortunately, it's too small, but she doesn't seem to mind. As long as she can reach those strings, she's alright with it.

Then, of course, there are the landscapes of life. No chance of looking at those close up. That's the whole point about a landscape. You take the beauty of its entirety in all at once. I am lucky enough that the piece of property my father-in-law purchased in the 1970s (and that we now live on) for his vineyards is full of stunning landscapes. I am even luckier that my sister-in-law's boyfriend is an architect who likes to bring the outdoors in with large windows (and lots of them). So, the house he designed for us has some of the most breathtaking views imaginable.

This one is the view I get every night as I walk up the stairs and cross the upstairs hallway on my way to bed. Windows cover the upper half of two walls along that side of the house, so I get the whole panoramic view as I head to bed. It's just a shame that my camera is incapable of capturing the picture exactly as I see it, because it if far better.

Here is the same view in the morning. If I am coaxed out of bed at sunrise, this is what I often see. Almost makes it worth getting up early. This is actually a horrible picture of it. My camera isn't able to get the beautiful reds and pinks at all without me underexposing it (this morning, the sun was a red, firey ball). Of course, when I do that, you don't see the trees and bushes as I see them. These are the moments I really wish I had a better camera (any suggestions as to which brand would do our sunrise justice?).

And, then, there are the animals. If you're not quick enough, you could miss them entirely...

How sheep got the reputation for being dumb, I'll never know. Almost every single day, the girls sneak out of their park. They're aided by the wild boar, who sneak in at night and leave a gaping whole under the fence. I'm pretty sure they're just trying to be helpful by showing my husband the flaws in his security system. Or, perhaps, they want to get a closer look at these two-legged beings who shut them back in each night. The other day, they came right up in front of the house, so I decided to get a closer look at them, too.

Taking a closer look at things can be tricky business, though. Either, as with people seen across a crowded bar, you find out the object wasn't all that pretty up close, or as with other people seen across a crowded bar, it just flees even when approached with caution.

Ahhhhh, and then, there's yarn. Yarn, of course, should always be looked at close-up (unless you're lucky enough to be standing in front of one of those Walls of Koigu you sometimes see in yarn shops - you can treat that like a landscape). Take this yarn, for example. I won a little contest (just by commenting) over at Wild Peculiar Joy. And, Jo sent me some yarn. It's a beautiful Colinette sock yarn. I'm so tempted to cast on for some new socks, but I know better, since I've still got 2 others socks still waiting for their mates.

The sock yarn is called Jitter Bug, which is kind of cute, and oddly appropriate, since I get in a jittery mood to knit with it each time I look at it. The colorway (or colourway, as Colinette calls is) is Jay. Beautiful blues with flecks of green here and there. Thanks Jo. I love it!

And, I took a little trip over to the thrift shop again. It sure is nice to do some guilt-free spontaneous shopping. It's great to know that I can't really do much damage, even if I let the shopaholic deep inside roam free for a few minutes.

Actually, this was a planned visit, because the girls need some warm-weather clothes, since the summer heat is stealthily sneaking up on us. It's not time yet, but I'd hate to be caught with my pants down (or with them wearing corduroy overalls, at least). So, I had a little look. Funny thing is, I came out with several nice shirts for myself. Hmmm. Interesting how that can happen when I have the best of intentions. Pink seems to have been the color of the day. Good thing, too, because I could use a bit of color in my life. Years ago, I seem to have happened into a drab color phase and stayed there way too long. As of yesterday, I'm officially out of it. I did actually get some things for the girls, too. Problem is, I am apparently raising weeds, not children. Of the 7 or 8 pieces of clothing I bought her, only a couple fit properly, and probably only one will still fit by the time warm weather comes around. I figured I was safe buying size 6 clothing for a 5-and-half-year-old, but apparently not. Next week, she's on spring break, so I'll be smart about it next time and take her along with me. It's best to let Her Pickiness choose her own clothes, anyway. I'm just lucky there are other girls in the family who will be able to wear the things I bought yesterday.
And, don't forget to take the time to smell (well, at least look at closely) all the flowers that are in bloom.

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