Thankful for Knitting…Among Other Things
See what I did there with the title? Ha.
I’m sure many of you are thinking the same way I am this Thanksgiving: In the face of what or who we might not have because of this pandemic, I am thankful for all that I do have…. my husband and our home and our life together; my family; my friends; Smudge.
But knitting comes up again and again in my daily list of things I’m grateful for (something I started in order to help stay thinking positively). It is involved in so many parts of my life and is tied to many of the other things in my life I am thankful for.
Knitting, for me, is relaxing (most of the time – see below for an example of not all the time), especially in a comfy chair, under a cozy blanket, with a kitty on my lap and Paul nearby. And it gives me such a proud boost when I finish something that I love.
Like these Longjohn Socks!
And my Memories sweater!
(The bottom picture shows the thumbhole in the cuff sleeves can be pulled low and act like fingerless mitts when it is extra chilly.)
Knitting also keeps me socialized. I’ve made some great knitting peeps over the years and we’ve been staying in touch through all this time of not being able to get together for our usual knit nights…. except for that one time it was chilly but we sat far apart out on our deck with the fire pit.
That was really nice and so good to see them.
But I also like to knit for others and it feels good when they are appreciative of what I make for them. I sent these socks to my mom recently, after she commented how much she liked them:
She has been the recipient of other socks I’ve knit in the past and has loved them.
And Paul has worn through two pairs of these felted slippers and is currently working on his third pair:
Can’t beat a thrice worn out item for proof that someone likes it. (I also made a pair of those slippers for my dad one Christmas and for a whole year afterward, he made many comments about how comfortable they were!)
Mostly, knitting is just, plain and simple, my jam. I love it so much. I knit just to knit. Most of the things I make, I don’t even wear. I just love to knit. And to talk about knitting. And to blog about knitting. It makes me happy.
And, for those who are new to reading this blog, another piece of proof for how much I love it is my license plate….
So, now, on to my story about how SOMETIMES knitting is not relaxing…
Last weekend I was coming to the last few rows of the above-pictured Memories sweater and I was getting dangerously low on yarn. It was a typical game of yarn chicken: Will I win by finishing? Or will the yarn win by running out?
That big loop was what was left, attached to my needle when I had one row and the bind off to do. Those other two yarn blobs are the ends of some of the already-knitted-with skeins. Mind you, these rows were about 400 stitches long because I was working on the picked up stiches of the button bands and the neck. So, yeah, that was totally not going to be enough. But I knitted on…. just in case. I made it through one more row and then had just the bind off to do and I completely ran out of yarn. I totally lost the game of yarn chicken.
Off I went to The Spinning Room yarn shop where they were out of the color I needed (not surprising since I bought the yarn three years ago!) so I got this not-really-matching-but-matching-close-enough-for-one-bind-off-row replacement:
(The purple and gray match, but there is no pink in the replacement skein.) Worked like a charm and no one will ever know (except you).
P.S. I haven’t sewn the buttons on yet. Not sure I will. It’s one of those things I can’t stand doing. I don’t typically button my cardigans but might use a shawl pin to hold it closed at the top.
Ok, and there are other times that knitting is a little bit not-relaxing… like with this new hat pattern (Bavarian Twisted Hat) I started with the intent to maybe teach it as a class. It is a charted pattern with only the setup row written out and it has completely thrown me for a loop.
It’s a new technique (twisted stitches) which means there are chart symbols that I am not used to and boy am I stumped. To be honest, that doesn’t happen to me very often – I’m pretty good at figuring things out and have taught myself much of what I know about knitting. So, this project is currently in time out while my brain takes a break from trying to figure it out.
In the mean time, I’ve moved on to some more of my WIPs including my Apple Blossom Socks, started March 22, 2017. They both had a little of the cuff done when I picked them back up and now I’ve got both legs done and I’m working on the first heel flap. I love Helen Stewart’s patterns (I’ve made several).
I loved this pattern when I first saw it and I loved the color of the yarn in the pattern picture so much that I ordered it from Hedgehog Fibers…. IN CORK, IRELAND. You know because I totally didn’t have any sock yarn here in my stash (…she says, completely sarcastically). I was not disappointed, though and I love this yarn. Can’t wait to finish them now. Three and a half years later.
And I also broke out my Helleborus Hat by Kirsten Kapur that I started January 9, 2016. I am making this with Periwinkle Sheep Delirium which is so wonderfully soft and it will be so warm. But I can’t work on this with any kind of a good show on tv. It is pretty fiddley with lots of different cables (which is probably why I put it down when back then!) So, now, when Paul starts watching Street Outlaws (street drag racing) on Discovery, I take this out to work on it!
So, this Thanksgiving weekend will be spent with my knitting (and Paul and Smudge). Can’t think of a better way to spend the weekend since it seems to tie together all of the things I am thankful for.
Happy Thanksgiving to you all. Be safe and stay well.