Well… it’s only a week past October…

With all the craziness that’s been going on, I let myself slip on getting a post in in October, but hey, better late than never. I also caught up with one more book review, this one on The Age of Conversation by Benedetta Craveri. I thoroughly enjoyed it, head on over to the review to get more details :).

October had quite a bit of fun in it, even if the whole election season was basically a giant bombardment of ad copy everywhere (online and in my mailbox… aargh!). I definitely made sure my ballot made it in there, I hope you did too. One of the most entertaining days was Halloween :D. I had gotten my dog a little dragon costume, that my sister did it up to fit him (he’s a dachshund, so length-wise he’s a medium, but width-wise he’s a lot smaller), propped the wings up so they bounced along as if he was flying, and strung battery-powered LED lights around the whole thing. He looked incredible. We dressed as a princess and a knight then to go along with that, but he really stole the show. We had a picnic in a nearby park (fully decked out already of course; we already got some attention at the retail area we wandered through to pick up our lunch), and then went out again in the evening to wander around with the trick-or-treaters. All-in-all a great day :).

I participated in another one of those Stitches at Home conferences earlier in the month, this time taking a class on a “Fox Paws” pattern and stacked increases and decreases, which I’m incredibly excited about. I haven’t finished making my first full swatch of it, so it remains to be seen how far I still have to go to be able to do it comfortably, but the class was a lot of fun regardless. The women that lead all these classes are incredible spirits, phenomenal teachers with amazing skills. I’m really glad I found out about this conference organization.

Which of course also resulted in some related knitting-stuff splurging XD. Got a bunch of yarn to make the Fox Paws shawl once I work out all the kinks in using that pattern, a kit to make a brioche-leaf scarf, and a bunch of stitch markers (they’re really cute; I got some Eiffel Tower ones, and some unicorn ones, and a few others). I’m still fascinated with this brioche technique. I got sort-of good at it back in the spring, but then I set it aside for a while; I tried to pick it up again a few weeks ago and realized I’d lost it. Back to YouTube videos. Hopefully it isn’t too hard to do, because then the cowl is a more complicated version of it.

In the world of my work life, I was invited to attend Hashicorp Partner Summit, which came with a free pass to HashiConf Digital, so that was a pretty exciting period of a few days. I’m even more inspired by that company now than I was before I was first introduced to it (as part of a project to make a “provider” that folks could use to provision resources of our software using their Terraform software; it’s because of that that I was invited to the Partner Summit). I also attended a couple sessions by Adam Piandes about online and memorable presentations, so those were similarly energizing. I don’t know where my career is going to go in the next few years, but hopefully it continues going on as fun of a journey as the last few years have been. I’m so grateful that I moved back out to the Bay Area. I’m sure my life would be nowhere near as fulfilling as it is now as if I had stayed in North Carolina. The first few years were a bit of a struggle, but I’m glad I took the risks I did and put the effort in.

On a more somber note, there was a lot of communication within my family about my grandmother. Her memorial service was a little bit into the month, and there were photos from that, as well as a treasure trove of photos that one of my uncles scanned in and sent to everyone. I’m a bit sad I wasn’t able to attend (health complications end of September/early October meant I was in no shape to go back to Louisiana for it), as that is probably going to be the last time all of my mom’s siblings will all be together, and my sister and I were the only cousins that weren’t there as well. It might have been my last chance to see many of them, as we’re pretty far-flung and haven’t stayed in close touch really since we stopped having Thanksgivings in Georgia all together (maybe two decades ago already o_O).

The remainder of November is shaping up to be pretty great too. This upcoming weekend is another Stitches event (it’s an expo though mainly and I’m going to skip doing any classes this time around since I still need to catch up with all the projects I have anyway XD). So looking forward to seeing all the trunk shows and stuff for that (got a free pass to all those since I participated in these September/October ones). And then the next two weekends I’m taking a workshop on Leadership for Women through a continuing education program, which should be similarly energizing in a different way. And I’ve already started reading the recommended book How Remarkable Women Lead in preparation for that; I’m even more convinced I did the right thing by signing up for the class. This goes along with what I said earlier in the post — I’m really excited for what the future might hold.

Anyway, I guess that’s enough rambling for now. Hope you’re all holding it together through this whole pandemic thing. I’m optimistic that if we can make it through to the other side bigger and better things are still to come. Humanity is pretty great and has made it through a lot of tough things before. We can do this.

One of the last photos I have inside my grandparents’ house

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