Emily M. DeArdo



Yarn Along No. 45

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So, here we are, back to the Wednesday Yarn Along!

I'm on the second book of the Mitford series, and I'm really liking them. They remind me of Alexander McCall Smith's books--everyday happenings, people living lives in their small towns, but you can't stop reading about them and immersing yourself in their world. Mitford is the American version of the Gabarone or Edinburgh of McCall Smith's stories. 



 (And yes....using up that washcloth yarn!) 

Yarn Along No. 43 (and a little bit about Mystery)

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The scarf progresses! I'm getting so much better at purling. I've found that these are really great projects for me to get my bearings with new things, even though I know all of you are tired of seeing scarves and washcloths. I promise I will eventually give you something more challenging. Promise! 

As is my wont, I'm re-reading Outlander. Again. I usually do this at least once a year. At the moment I'm in the middle of book 7, An Echo In The Bone. As I was re-reading, I came across this passage, which I liked and thought I'd share: 

"I talked to Mama a little bit about it," Bree said after a moment's thought. "She laughed."
"Did she?" Roger said dryly, and got the breath of a laugh from Bree in answer. 
"Not like she thought it was funny," She assured him. "I'd asked her if she thought it was possible for a traveler to change things, change the future and she told me it was, obviously--because she changed the future every time she kept someone from dying who would've died if she hadn't been there. Some of them went on to have children they wouldn't have had, and who knew what those children would do, that they wouldn't have done if they hadn't...and that was when she laughed and said it was a good thing Catholics believed in Mystery and didn't insist on trying to figure out exactly how God worked, like Protestants do." 

--Diana Gabaldon, A Echo in the Bone

The reason I like this is because it's true. In general, Catholics are really comfy with Mystery. When I taught the kids about the Eucharist last week, they just went with it. Now, sure, there are the Eucharistic miracles, which show the validity of Transubstantiation (this one, from Italy, is my favorite), but there generally comes a point where we have to just accept mystery. We teach the kids this early on. We'll never fully understand the Trinity, or God, or really, anything else, probably--just like Bree and Roger can't ever understand why they're time travelers. 

Daybook No. 112

behind the scenes, books, Catholicism, current events, current projects, Daybook, Dominicans, fiction, knitting, links, Tidying Up, writingEmily DeArdoComment

Outside my window::

Cloudy, a marked contrast from yesterday's blue skies and sun, but since It's going to be in the 60s, I'll take it. Especially since....gulp.....snow might in the future! 


My PJs--I just got up (it's 8 AM as I'm writing this) 


North and South, Mockingjay, Rising Strong,  and The Betrothed. I really like North and South--Margaret Hale is a great character. I'm late to the Rising Strong party, but better late than never, and I also have Daring Greatly to read.

In the CD player::

Fun Home and Hamilton. No Christmas music until at least after Thanksgiving!

Living the Liturgy::

Today is Lucy Pevensie's feast day! And since she's my Dominican patron, I get to party all day. 


Around the House::

Doing the deep cleaning to get ready for decorating> I don't have much to do--the tree, a few baubles, and my Fontanini creche (one of the best Christmas gifts I have ever received, ever). The Baby Jesus doesn't go in the creche until Christmas Eve, and the Magi make their way into the set proper by Epiphany. If you're looking for a Nativity set, I highly recommend this one. The figures are made of a type of plastic that means kids can chew on them, play with them, etc., and they won't break!

Speaking of Catholic households, this is a good article from Our Sunday Visitor that's worth a ponder. 

I'm also in the last stages of Tidying Up. I took three bags of books to Half Price books yesterday, so I'm still looking for the book/CD/DVD "click point" that Kondo talks about. I'm sure I'll find it--eventually. :) Until then, I just keep taking books to HPB. 


I have "won" NaNo--but the book's not done. Oh no. I'm going to write a sequel. (I can't believe it either!) Nothing about this book has gone the way I thought it would, but it's been in a great way. My friend Andrea says the "muse has inhabited me", and while that may or may not be true, it sure is fun. I will officially "win" NaNo on the 20th, when you can start verifying word counts. 

So I have to put an ending on this guy (a cliff-hanger, of course), and then start the new document for book two, maybe do some outlining--and then touch nothing until January. This is what usually happens with my NaNo books--I finish them in November and then don't touch them until January. That gives them, and me, a nice break before I begin revising/editing. 

And I can purl! You'll see the proof tomorrow in the Yarn Along. 



In light of the attacks on Paris, this is an excellent read. It's long, but it's well-worth the time it takes. 

There are so many problems in our world that are new, and all colliding at once--fighting a war against an enemy we can't see (as Judi Dench said in Skyfall), the Syrian refugees, elections, earthquakes in Mexico and Japan....

The only solution I can see to it is to pray more intensely. 


Plans for the week::

Not much, which is nice. CCD on Sunday, when we'll talk about Jesus' birthday (we talked about Advent last week). And then it's Thanksgiving week, and then we're into December! Holy cow!


This Week's Question: How do you celebrate Thanksgiving in your family? 






Daybook No. 102

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Outside my window::

Sunny and hot. Figures that once the kids are back in school we get summertime temperatures--mid to upper 80s and maybe even cracking 90 on Friday. But the pool is still open for those of us who don't have school!


Gray skirt, pink t-shirt. Going to the gym later and I can work out in this t-shirt. I like to keep the time between changing and working out to a minimum, but since I'm also going to run errands after the gym, I need something on the bottom other than my workout pants. 

Listening to: 

Audrey Assad's Death Be Not Proud


Middlemarch, Cloud Atlas, The Sandcastle Girls, A Spool of Blue Thread. How much do I love being able to get library books on my kindle? WIN. I'm also loving Clodagh McKenna's cookbooks. I write a lot about Italian food, but I'm also Scots-Irish and German, and Irish food is really good. At least, I think it is. So I'm improving my skills there.


From the kitchen::

Salad with parmesan chicken from last night; dinner with Mom and Dad tonight. Meals this week include salmon stir fry, shrimp and avocados, and chicken fajitas. Two of these are new recipes, so we'll see how they go. They're from Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution cookbook, which I adore, so I'm pretty sure they're going to be delicious. I've only had a few misses with that collection. 

Praying for::

Guys, I've got some urgent prayer requests. Please join me in praying for these folks, especially? 

  • My friends Abby and Chris, who are trying to sell their house near Boston--they moved to Ohio (yay!) but still have to sell the old house (boo!). 
  • My friend Sage. Sage has CF like me, and she's in the process of being listed (or is already listed? I can't remember at the moment) for transplant. She's fighting a nasty infection with nasty medication--so really, life is misbehaving right now. Pray that she can kick this bug, and that he husband can get a new job in Wisconsin (where they have to relocate for the transplant). 

Thanks so much. And you're always welcome to leave prayer requests in the comments--always. I see all the comments that get posted here, and I'll pray for you!


September is like the new January, you know? Even though I'm long past going back to school, I always feel like it's a good time to start new habits or get back into a rhythm of life, after the sort of lazy summer scheduling. So I've got a new fitness tracking book, and I'm laying down some new fitness rails here. It helps that I took the last dose of the SCARY MEDICATION, that made me have lots of joint and muscle pain (to the point where standing was hard, sometimes), so my body is much more willing to move. Yay. But I'm also working on some new blog plans (post ideas), and I'm gathering supplies to print the manuscript off and mail it to a publisher. (I had to order mucho ink on Amazon today, so I don't run out!) CCD has started, so that alone means I have to keep that schedule and our syllabus on track. I'm also getting really excited about NaNoWriMo 2015. 

For some reason, I've always been sort of lackluster in August. September reinvigorates me. 

Around the house::

I've been a lot better about keeping the house in good shape. This was one of my August goals, and I'm proud of myself for achieving a weekly house cleaning schedule. Go, me! Since I work at home, it's important for me to have order, so I don't get distracted with a million other things. 


I'm making some bookmarks, because I have some beautiful yarn for them, and I need some more bookmarks around here! I will try purling again with a new ball of yarn, because the one I tried with before was just HOSTILE. 






Daybook No. 100

books, Catholicism, Daybook, dominican saints series, drawing, knitting, links, Sketchbook Skool, writingEmily DeArdo1 Comment

(yes, I need to change the photo. I'll do that soon. :-P)

Outside my window::

Sunny, cloudy, and breezy. By "cloudy", I Mean we've got a few clouds floating around. So I guess that means partly sunny? I have no idea. 


My blue and white stripped breton top (short-sleeved) and my Boden skirt with the seaside print. I get more compliments on this skirt than anything else I own, so basically I have to keep it safe forever and ever. :) I'm also wearing my Charleston goldbug bee earrings. 

In the CD player::

Sterling Road, by Cassie and Maggie. 


Today's the 11th, so I'm off to do Holy Hour as soon as I finish this. I'm part of the Summit Dominican's adoring rosary, so that means on the 11th of every month, I have a Holy Hour. (I chose the 11th because that's the date of my transplant) Last month, my holy hour was in Charleston. :) I'm taking a lot of intentions with me. 

Today is also the feast day of St. Clare, follower of St. Francis and foundress of the Poor Clares--Mother Angelica's order. 


Middlemarch, Persuasion, The Seduction of the Crimson Rose


Working on my Sketchbook Skool classes--I have to draw a piece of toast later today. :) I'm also working on a colored pencil drawing that I did in pen a few weeks ago. I'm adding the color now and trying some new techniques. We'll see what comes of it. 

Also, I'm starting a new knitting project, but more on that tomorrow. Sorry guys, it's not anything exciting....yes. That purl stitch! :) 

Around the House::

It's the master bath's week for deep cleaning so I"m working up there. It always amazes me how many dishes I manage to go through as one person. Really! 


This week I'm doing a series on Dominican saints, and tomorrow St. Thomas Aquinas is up. So far I've done St. Dominic and St. Catherine of Siena. It came to my attention over the weekend that not too many people are familiar with the Dominican saints, so I'm going to try to rectify that. 

I've also got two September Real Housekeeping pieces being edited. We haven't come up with our October topic yet, so I'm waiting to see what it is before I start brainstorming ideas. 

I'm also playing around with a new idea for a novel that will be my 2015 NaNo piece. In the brainstorming stage now. 


Yoga yesterday, gym today--after Holy Hour. I'm sad that this summer has mostly been too cool to go swimming. 



Seven Quick Takes No. 82

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I am super excited to share my first giveaway with you! You can read all about it here. Enter often. (Well, as often as you can....)


The weather is going to be perfect this weekend and I don't know what to do with it. Do I go to the Irish Festival in Dublin (OH, not Ireland. :-P)? The Violet festival? Do I just hang out at the pool? So many options, so little time. And the State Fair started this week, so there's always that. Seeing a butter cow is a fun thing, let me tell you. 


I am almost done with the washcloth, which means you might--might!-- have something new to read about in the Yarn Along this week. I know that excites you so much! I'm still reading Middlemarch, though, and I have to read Emma this weekend since it's the next in the Jane Austen Re-Read. That post will be up on Thursday. 


I have bought my first Christmas present--a book for my grandma. Given that my mom started shopping in May, I am behind. She is the Queen of Christmas. 


I know you've seen the Planned Parenthood videos on the news and on the web. I can't say anything that hasn't already been said. But I dearly hope that those who are so misguided as to think that these aren't babies that are being killed, by the millions, every year in America, that they will finally see what is really happening in these places. It's not healthcare. It's death on demand. 

Every single life matters, from the moment it's conceived, to the moment of natural death. But we have to start protecting it when its most fragile. 


I'm going to a Dominican Rite Mass on Sunday in honor of the feast of St. Dominic, which is August 8. I went for the first time last year and was a bit discombobulated. Let's hope I do better this year--I'll report back. 


I'm making progress in my art classes. The assignment this week? To draw part of a piece of toast. Not kidding. So I'm working on that today. 

Yarn Along No. 27

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This is going to be a quick installment. :)



Wednesday #YarnAlong! @emily_m_deardo

So I'm still working the same two projects, the scarf and the washcloth/dishcloth/dust rag (whatever you want to call it!). I've been knitting while I watch Outlander or Breaking Bad, and I can knit for about a half hour at a time during those. I did find another skein of yarn, called Chipmunk, that I think will be great for the next VA scarf project. It's the same type of yarn as the one I'm currently working with, which you can read about here.

Wednesday #YarnAlong time! @emily_m_deardo

As for reading: I'm saving The Girl on the Train and A God In Ruins for the Charleston trip, which is fast approaching. I want to have new books to read in the car. :) I just finished The Astronaut Wives Club, which was pretty good. There were a lot of wives to keep straight, eventually, but I think the writer did a good job giving us insight into their lives. The book I'm currently reading is Pride and Prejudice, for the Great Jane Re-Read.