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Monthly Archives: August 2012

Brain Hat Update, A Random Acts of Kindness and a KAL

I have been a little quiet lately, mostly not knitting or any other art projects because I have been very busy healing.
My doctor gave me the green light to start doing physical therapy to start walking!

It had been a long six weeks of not being able to put any weight on my foot or move my healing ankle but it was good for knitting when my brain cooperated.

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(brain hat, cooperating)

Now, though, starting to walk with partial weight and using crutches has been a huge challenge. It’s a good challenge! I am doing really well. My surgery-repaired shoulder is not loving using crutches and this has been hampering my knitting in a big way. The faster I could get to ditching that crutch and letting my shoulder heal the better.

I did start pinning the miles of i-cord onto the brain hat, it is looking quite loby! Three-quarters to go!

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(this is Quinn’s brain hat, lobes pinned in the front hemisphere)

I also wound up yarn for a new project, a Knit-A-Long for a beautiful lace weight shawl called Nadira.

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(Tess laceweight Merino, a pretty color)

Some of my nice new knitting friends from Twitter invited me to join a KAL on Ravelry for the Nadira shawl and with their help and support I hope to be able to get through it. It’s is a beautiful design.

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(a screenshot from the Nadira pattern)

My next step is to swatch the yarn so that I can use the best needle for the project.

In the midst of my hobbling around, piles of icepacks and resuming pain medication, ankle Olympics at home and at the physical terrorist, a truly delightful thing happened. A Twitter friend sent me a darling care package that she called “A random act of kindness”.

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A bunch of beautiful stamps from
Greece, truly Hellenic post!

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An intriguing little box was under the tidy wrappings.

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Tucked away Inside were little gifts!

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A complete set of crochet hooks in a pretty hand sewn pouch just for me. Now I can try to learn to crochet.

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An aromatic bag of mysterious spices from Lemnos and a gorgeous sea sponge from Rhodes was inside the box as well as a delicious packet of toffee from London.

What a sweet thing for my new friend to do, and I cannot say just how much this delightfully unexpected gift lifted my spirits. Thank you, Laurentia!

It was just in time for my birthday and that is a bit of synchronicity. I am plotting a little box of treats I can send her in return from foggy San Francisco.

Please do chime in if you have a great idea.

Meantime I’m off to swatch and slap on some more ice. A quiet last weekend at home before returning to work on Monday stretches before me.

Why I Knit

Occasionally when I am working on a scarf or a sock some people question me why I am knitting something that takes so long to make and costs so much compared to buying it.

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Besides the obvious answer to these unenlightened individuals, the question keeps popping up in my mind: Why Do I Knit?

I started knitting during a time in my life when there were so many things happening that were out of my control and were very stressful. Learning or relearning a difficult skill such as knitting during a stressful time may not sound like a great idea but I found the distraction and concentration on something I could control very helpful. Handling soft fuzzy yarn in pretty colors and the feel of the satiny wooden needles in my hands was pure pleasure.

I also felt confidence in myself as I solved problems and created a beautiful garment from “string and sticks”. It feels good to do something for which you have a knack. But there was something else, another reason that I just couldn’t find the words to express, until today.

My dear friends C___ and D___ gave me a great book for my birthday and I had a lovely morning reading it and sipping coffee snuggled in my new shawl, warming me from my damp hair around my shoulders.

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My eyes fell on a page about Melanie Falick, a well known author of several iconic books on knitting.

“I love that knitting is quiet. It creates a peaceful place in my mind,” she reflects. The hours it takes to knit a garment are “hours of pleasure,” she notes. In an era of high-speed multitasking, Melanie finds that knitting balances other elements in her life. “We just whiz through the day, trying to keep all the balls up in the air,” she observes. “When you make something by hand, it has great meaning, and it feels really good to have meaning in your life.”

The Knitter’s Life List, Gwen W Steege, Storey Publishing, LLC, 2011

Finding a truism of your feelings expressed so eloquently in someone else’s words brings home the community that exists between knitters. We all exhibit similar generous and caring tendencies, we create and give love handcrafted in the form of fiber, we appreciate the art and genius of others and we very often have the same feelings about our own art, what it means and why it is important.

It is a remarkable thing. This is why I knit.

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