Monday, April 27, 2015

Cookie A Rocks

There's just no way around it.  I love knitting a Cookie A pattern...probably too much as I forgot I was supposed to go to bed at a reasonable hour last night.

It made me tired and kind of grumpy today, but mostly because I couldn't get home quickly enough to get back to work on this beauty.

Yarn:  Sock! Yarn! dyed by Mrs. Crosby
Pattern: Cookie A's Agave, the complex pattern from March 2015 club.

Oh, how I love the knitting of this.

Oh, how I hated going to bed last night.

Oh, how I can't wait to see it once I get a couple of repeats in so I can see the interactions of all these cables.

Oh, how funny I thought it was when I was saying "knit, purl, knit, purl, purl" and Pearl came running over and made her sweet little prrry noise at me.

Sunday, April 26, 2015

A completed project!

Yarn:  Flock Sock by Holiday Yarns in Rainbow Unicorn (March MicroBrew Color at JBW)
Pattern: Xeriscape by Cookie A (March 2015 Club pattern)

LOVED the pattern, LOVED the yarn.  I started out on size 2.25mm which is my go-to for socks, but I found the yarn to be knitting too tightly, so I upped to the 2.5mm and was very happy.  The yarn felt a tad more rustic than other sock yarns I've used recently, BUT, I wore these socks today and didn't find them to be a problem at all.

If you like an easy sock pattern and enjoy the ability to use whatever yarn you want--then I recommend keeping your eyes peeled for this one to go public.  It was quick and easy, almost mindless knitting, but since it's Cookie A it's wonderful and turns out beautifully.

Now, I'm off to work on the complex pattern for this month.  Cables and traveling stitches and loveliness all over the place!

(oh, and I colored today.  happy!)

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Getting in on the Driver's Side

Tonight I went to Aggie Muster.  It's something we Aggies do each April 21st to honor the Aggies who have been called home in the past year.  I thought of my daddy tonight...even though he wasn't an Aggie, he passed away one year ago tomorrow, and anniversaries have the effect of making one reflective...

As I left this evening and was walking to my car I started aiming towards the passenger side.  Funny that...I haven't ridden as a passenger in a car except for maybe 3 or 4 times since I've moved to Reno.

I don't have to talk about the symbolism, there, do I?  It's so obvious that it made me laugh a little.

And made me proud a lot.

And made me really happy that I am where I am, doing what I'm doing.

Driver's side rocks!


Today's picture is of the towels I made for Rachel to send to her mother and sister for Christmas.  She's a new weaver and wanted to hem them herself, and she just got them finished this past week and brought them to work so I could see them one last time before they traveled East...I have to say I'm really proud of this work.  More pics to follow.

Monday, April 20, 2015

The thinking of it

We  have a Step Challenge at work...Step To It...or something like that.  We have teams and we calculate how many steps we get each week and the winning team gets something really special.  I'm looking forward to competing in my step challenge because I've needed the excuse to get out and walk...the weather hasn't been keeping me from it...just plain and simple laziness (and the tightness of my pants is beginning to tell me that I can't eat like I did when I was pulling all the time).

At any rate, that's the long explanation for saying that I went for a 40 minute walk after work today.  That's a lot of time with myself to think.  To not be distracted by hobbies or tv or Pearl (sometimes even Zora is cute enough to keep me from having to think).

I won't say I'm avoiding...that wouldn't be quite right and would indicate some sort of purposeful action NOT TO think...I've just been through so much recently and grown so much and changed so much...and have new responsibilities at work (that I love, btw, but they are new and I am learning) that I've simply stopped thinking about things...about the divorce.  About the pain I felt in July when it all fell apart.

But today, on my walk, I had to think about something and what I thought about is this:

"I'm not sure why it hurt so badly"

I can still feel the shock of it and remember how the emotional pain hurt me physically.  How I couldn't eat for weeks...the physical act of chewing food made me want to throw up.  How I couldn't stop crying for days and my hands shook so badly that I couldn't knit or crochet.

I certainly remember all of that, but I was walking around in my beautiful neighborhood, I honestly couldn't remember why it hurt so badly.

It's a testament, that thought, to how much I've grown to love myself.  That scared, sad, lonely, miserable girl who was married for so long...she didn't love herself.  She loved HIM.  She loved others, but she didn't take the time to get to know herself and realize what a beautiful person she is.  She thought that by living through others she would find fulfillment.  It's what I was taught, how I was raised to believe.

Loving myself.  Doing for myself...that was selfish.  But what I've learned instead on this long hard journey is that I'm worth taking care of...and by taking care of myself I can become valued by others...but if I'm not, that's ok because I know my own worth and find fulfillment there.


Today's picture is of the cowl I finished last week (I think it was 4 days start to finish) using the March club color for the Rockin' Sock Club: Gran's Kitchen.  The pattern is 1950s Ice Box Cowl.

I love the cowl...the yarn is amazingly gorgeous.  The stitch pattern on the cowl is very pretty.  But there's a design flaw that makes it curl in on itself and that's disappointing.  I'm not the only one who's had this problem...but I won't unknit it to fix it.  I'll just spread it out and show folks when they ask :)

Saturday, April 18, 2015

The writing down of it

For any of you who have been through the kind of loss and separation that I've experienced this year, you know that there's a soft kind place called denial that comforts you and helps you through the worst of the pain.

Denial is a safe place.  A place where you can hold yourself tight and stay safe and become comfortable with yourself...the thing that's outside of denial, don't have to pay attention to it, do you?

Denial is a warm place.  A place where you are protected from the cold winds and the harsh climate of reality.  A place that is cozy, comforting and, if not happy, at least it's not terrible.

Denial may be the place that allows us to stay alive.  By denying the things that are going on around us we build some kind of protective walls from the anguish and pain that if we had to face it head on would certainly break us.

Denial is the place that we go to heal from the awful...and as we heal, we start to tiptoe outside of denial.  Often we have to go back, but more and more we become aware that the awful isn't going to kill us anymore and we can approach it.

Look it in the eyes.

Stare it down.

And cry.  Feel sad, feel scared.  Feel alone.

But we aren't in denial anymore, and we know that it's there if we need to run back to it.


I think, too, that each of us has our own kind of denial.  Some people throw themselves into work or hobbies or their children in order to avoid the hurt that's waiting for them when they're done with that project.

Or they pretend that the thing that's real--the awful--simply isn't.  (that's me).

Some folks turn their backs on the real and walk away from it.  They acknowledge that it's there but they deny its power over them.


Facing reality has been the hardest thing I've ever had to do.  Staring down demons that were there in my life...the ones that made me miserable, the ones that made me pretend that I wasn't miserable.  The ones that hurt me day in and day out and I denied their presence and their pain because it was simply easier to go on...more comfortable to put on my blanket of denial and pretend that things weren't what they were.

I can't pretend any longer.  I have to say write tell people the truth.  The awful, sad, painful truth.  And while I know I'm ready to say it, I know that others may not be ready to hear it.  Their own blanket of denial is protecting them from whatever demons lurk in their lives.

So, I sit...and I write it down...and it hurts and it scares me.


But I came to a realization last week.  One that I've kept to myself because it's so precious.  One that has made all the difference in the world to me.  One that has made me happier than I think I've ever been in my life.

I'm safe.  I've built a space for myself, here in my apartment in Reno, in my wonderful job at JBW, with my new friends and colleagues, with my old friends and colleagues, with my family, with my therapist, with my pets, with the demons from my past...a space that I've created by facing the reality that I and now.  The one I'm living.

There are still things that may hurt me, people who have the ability and probably desire to do something harmful to me.  But I can decide how much to let them in and in knowing that little truth.  Knowing that I have power.  That I can build, and have built, the boundaries around me to hold me safe and protect me--AND NOT DENY MY PRESENT OR THE RELATIONSHIPS WITH PEOPLE AROUND ME--I have become something that I treasure.  Something that I know that I will do whatever it takes to protect MYSELF.

This one thing...this knowing...these boundaries...this safety.  It's monumental, paradigm shifting.

Simply amazing.


And I'm so proud of myself for it all.

Friday, April 17, 2015

I haven't gone missing

...well not really.  I've just been knitting a lot and watching a lot of tv and ruminating and figuring some things out.  Give me a week or so...I think I'll be back to normal by then.

Tuesday, April 7, 2015


If you ever wonder what the knitters/crocheters/weavers/crafters who work in yarn stores talk about while at work...not surprisingly there are a lot of conversations about yarn.

We're always amazed at the new stuff that comes in.  We touch it, criticize it, play with it, fondle it, imagine what wonderful things it could be.  Often we covet it and wish we had enough money and time to bring it home and do all the amazing things we dream of it becoming.  Sometimes we buy it and thank our lucky stars that we work in a yarn store where we get to see such wonderful things.

We talk about the projects on our needles.  We love seeing the work of our fellow co-workers.  We like to feel the yarn, look at the finished project, be amazed at the talent and creativity of the person who made it.

We talk about the things we do in our time off--mostly knitting, but there's lots of tv and hiking and other interests that keep us going in our lives away from the warehouse.

We talk about work...that isn't surprising, but we often have to "figure things out" and that requires many pow-wows.

We talk about our families.

We talk about our dreams and plans.

And, I know you'll be surprised because of the "teaser" title of this entry...we talk about pooling.

People have lots of opinions about pooling.  You love it or hate it.  Want to plan it or let serendipity take its toll.  You want only solids, or the more color the better.  Some people are afraid of pooling and buy the beautiful hand dyed or painted yarn only to let it sit in their stash for fear of what it'll look like knitted up...

But mostly, we forget that pooling is what happens any time colors get together.  Take the sky for instance. Right now it's a lot of pooling of dark grey with some lighter greys mixed in there.  There are places in the sky where the pooling makes shapes and creates interest and dimension...but mostly it's just the sky--an overall grey with bits of colors pooled in there for interest.

A lovely masterpiece created by the Higher Power for our enjoyment.

Or take another example from nature:  When you gain some distance from a rose bush, it looks like all it is is red and green, but upon getting closer you can see the individual flowers, the differences in the colors of red and green, and the bits of brown that got lost in the overall color of the bush.

Or a mountain.  The mountains out in Reno have lately put on a blush of green. It was rather neon looking yesterday afternoon--but subtle.  Overall the mountains still look brown and maintain their power against the sky--but their pooling changes from day to day.

Which is why I think that pooling is so amazing when we get to knit it into a project.  Taken as a "whole" a project will look one color.  We typically see it from afar and only upon up-close inspection do we see the little bits of colors and pooling that happen when you use a multi-colored yarn.  Sometimes we think that it isn't attractive, but if we step away and see the item we've knitted from the distance that others will see it, or look at it as a whole, the pooling becomes abstract, not personal, and it becomes a lovely part of the project.  The painterly effect from the skein becomes a painterly effect in the knitted fabric.

And it's just lovely and wonderful and oh-so-surprising if you let it be.

Yarn: Rockin' Sock Light in November 2012 Club Color "Cables of Wrath"
Pattern:  Trillian.

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Not 1, Not 2, but THREE finished projects!

 Yarn:  Traveler by Dragonfly in March 2015 Color "Jocelyn"
Pattern:  Dovetail Cowl

 Yarn: Miss Babs Yummy 2-ply in March 2015 Colors Pool and Lagoon
Pattern: Lunaris

Yarn: Tanis Fiber Orange Label in JBW Microbrew Color Luxe
Pattern: Ups and Downs Cowl (It's crochet but I bet you didn't see it at first!)


I've been busy this week...processing, coming to terms with things I don't want to come to terms with and knitting/crocheting and watching BBC shows on TV.

This getting healthy business is hard work.  I know I'll get there but some days it's just hard.  Hard, hard, hard, hard and hard.

Awesome news: I've been promoted to Back Orders and Inventory Manager!  I was dying to tell you but I had to wait until it was official and announced and everything.  I'm so excited and have some ideas about things we can try so we can be more efficient and accurate and all that jazz...


Knit night tonight. I'll be working on a Trillian Shawl in November 2012 Rockin'Sock color Cables of Wrath.


Hugs everybody.  I know we all need them and virtual or not, they do lift your spirits!