Wednesday, January 23, 2008

all those who are able, please stand

sleeve 1
a sweater that i was working on one year ago at this time, for shari's week of winter whites.

Sometimes I am overwhelmed by the feeling that our human existence is a long string of sorrows and tragedies. I think our job as people is to find and share all the beauty and the joy that we can in the world, to help ourselves (and everybody else) through all the sorrow.

Thinking about this today, I was remembering how in church when it was time for a hymn, the pastor would say "All those who are able, please stand." That's our job. If you're not knocked down at the moment, even if you're struggling back onto your feet, please stand. Stand and sing out in joy and share it with everybody within shouting distance. It's not always an easy job (and I am usually off-key), but we have got to get up and sing, whenever we are able. And it's easier and it sounds better when we do it together.

Anyway, thanks for indulging my Deep Thoughts.

On to more shallow thoughts... about knitting, of course. Over the long weekend I had a grand time sitting on my couch with piles of yarn, going back and forth to the yarn stash and the library and the stacks of knitting magazines looking for instructions on how to make ruching and measurements for different things... it was all so pleasurable.

Because there was a threat of snow on Saturday (it materialized into a lovely dusting on Saturday night), all planned activities for the weekend were basically scrapped. In North Carolina whenever we have a forecast of Impending Weather, we stay home. Hard rain, dusting of snow, thunderstorm, a bit of hail... all these are reasons to cancel school and stay home. So over the weekend, finding our planned activities curtailed, I settled in for massive knitting.

It's funny, because although I spent many wonderful hours knitting, I didn't really finish anything. I was mostly just fiddling with yarn, something I don't actually do very much, but which was incredibly enjoyable. I did get the giant cloche felted, and it seems to have shrunken down to a manageable size, just maybe with one more trip through the washer than is really conscionable during a drought. I still need to decorate it before presenting it to the Birthday Girl on Friday, but I think I will let her try it on first, seeing as how it might need yet another water-hogging trip through the washer to fit her well.

I was also fooling around with sock yarn working on some project ideas for sock yarn leftovers, which I think will become a Free Pattern Friday project some time in early spring. I always have significant-yet-paltry amounts of sock yarn left over and have been trying to come up with good things to do with them. What do you all do with your leftover sock yarn?

And I was also knitting up fun swatches with Cotton-Ease, inspired by my little muse, Violet, who is the most fun kid to knit for that I know. Now that she's going to be 5, I'm moving out of the Toddler Zone and into the Little Girl Zone with the sweater designs. I remember once going to a talk by Stella Marrs, the wonderful postcard artist. [Artist talks always crack me up, because words are generally not the artist's chosen medium... they often explain their ideas much better through images]. But anyhow, someone asked Stella whether her art changed when she became a mother, and she said, "Yes! When she was a baby, I did a lot of baby postcards. Then when she got to be a toddler, it seemed like I did a lot of toddler postcards. Now that she's a little girl, I seem to do a lot of postcards with little girls in them." That really cracked me up. But I think my knitting design is that way, too. When my friends' kids were all bitty babies, I did a lot of bitty baby designs. Now that they are little girls... well, it must be time for the pink faux-fur trim and rhinestone insignias that say things like "Juicylicious" on the butt.

Now that we've come to the most shallow end of my thoughts, it's probably time to sign off and make a cup of tea. Maybe, just maybe, if you come back on Friday there will be a 1920's retro cloche pattern in these parts. If not, then the Friday after that for sure.


  1. I'd never really thought of that phrase before as you've explained it...I kind of like it. Although I have to admit, I'm not sure I share the same dark perspective you do, I do like the idea that we are obligated to share joy.

    Of course, my joy is as off key as it gets ;-)

  2. well thought and well said. amen.

  3. love the title and your thoughts surrounding it. really wonderful. and winter white yarn is the best. xo

  4. Thanks for the 'deep thoughts'. It's not very original, but with my left over sock yarn I knit it into infant/child's socks and donate them to charity.

  5. love your deep thoughts. i agree that more joy should be spread.

    as for leftover sock yarn or leftover yarn in general, i make square miters. if there's enough, i make a baby cardigan with all the miters (the miters forming front and back, with the sleeves being one solid color or striped or whatever the color fairy wishes).

    or i find things to do with miters...blankets, cushion covers, bags..the possibilities are endless. :)

  6. Our minister always said that too. And I was always grateful that I could stand because others around me couldn't. I've spent the last few cold days mucking around with my pattern books and magazines and yarn and starting and stopping projects and generally enjoying it all. Sounds like you've been doing the same. :O) I did manage to make a little hat for my new baby neighbour last evening, but that's about it. :O) Glad you're able to stand up, too.

  7. Your post has inspired so much introspection. I've spent the last ten minutes or so just thinking about what you posted.

    Deep Thoughts.


  8. yes - me too...

    I want to knit with such yarn

    xox - eb.

  9. i love this thought, and your MLK post, so much.
    and our knitting looks strangely similar right now. is that silkroad tweed? i ripped this really misguided half of a long wrap sweater to make mariah from knitty. xox


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