Monday, November 28, 2011

Finding Relief

I have a million things to do. There is a group project I have to start, Christmas knitting to finish, Christmas knitting to start, cleaning to do, packing up toys, decorating for Christmas, and a zillion other things that I should do other than blog. Yet, here I am. Why? Maybe because today was a rough day for me.

You see, I have a job that, well, I just don't care for. I really don't like it; I would even go so far as to say I hate my job. Hate is a strong word for me, really. But this is the kind of job where everyday, I am tempted to quit. Just walk out, never to return. It never gets any better, although I can't say it ever gets any worse really, and it's a constant wearing on one's soul. I try to leave it at work, I really do. I want to have family time at home, and not be bothered with the trifles at work. However, this job does not let me do that. It follows me, like a gremlin, lurking behind doors and around corners, just waiting for me to let down my guard. That's my job - a gremlin. It consistently knocks down any attempt I have to get ahead, and once I do get a little ahead, I fall behind in something else. It's never ending. I used to think I disliked accounting - I really don't. I would gladly take a regular accounting job now. This is not the direction I want to go in my career, and I am stuck.

I find solace in blogging. This allows me an outlet, an escape. I have never wanted to quit a job so badly in my life, and yet I keep going. Just for a little while longer...until...I win the lottery. I guess in order to do that, I'd have to play. I am almost finished with one Christmas present - buttons have to be sewn on and a ribbon run through it, and then it's done. That will be two down. Since the knitting part of this one is finished, I count it as done. All the better for me. Now, I have just two, possibly three more gifts to make.

I'm starting earlier next year, and everyone's getting something handmade.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Crochet vs. Knit, the Ultimate Showdown

Crochet gets a bad rap. Yesterday, I voluntarily helped out at my LYS, and close to closing time, we received a complaint. A woman came in who was a crocheter, and was very disappointed with the reception she had received. This slightly surprised me, since I frequent this same shop and have never received such comments. Perhaps it's because I have proven myself as a knitter, and a crocheter. I am what is jokingly referred to as "bi-craftual" - I knit and crochet. I am in bewilderment as to why knitters frown so much on crochet. I can understand them not crocheting, just as I can understand how people do not knit. However, for someone to be critical of someone else's creative outlet, is just wrong. Who is to say that one craft is better than another? Who deems one craft higher on the "art scale" than another? Is painting better than embroidery? Is sewing better than scrapbooking? Really? Who is one crafter to judge another by what craft they make?

To be honest, I knit right now more than I crochet simply because knitting is a functional craft. I need functional items. Crochet is actually more "artsy" than knitting. The items created with crochet are usually decorative (not always, but I am speaking in generalities). Crochet gives us the infamous doilies to decorate tables (and I've seen some lovely ones framed), jewelry, the occasional scarf, shawl, and sweater, amigurumi, bowls, and the ever-popular joke of the yarn world - the tissue box cover. These items are generally a strict expression of art, not something to cuddle under and keep warm. These are not items to wear while braving the cold rain and snow on a dark winter's night. These are items to brighten our homes, walls, tables, and add to the "art factor" of our lives. These are an expression, an artistic expression, of the crocheter. It's not to say that crochet can't be used for functional items; I myself have crocheted an afghan which turned out fantastically, and the recipient is still glad to have it. Without crochet, some knit projects would not work out quite as well. I have a blanket, still in time out, that needs crochet in order to be finished. The squares were knit, but a border of crochet needs to be around each square before sewn together. Another bonus of crochet I have found is finishing. I find finishing in crochet actually EASIER than in knitting. The ends are easier to weave in and hide. There are not as many lovely patterns in crochet as there are in knit, at least for functional garments. I have seen some beautiful uses of crochet in garments, but there are many more that are horrible.

My main concern is that crochet will get lost. It is a viable craft, and one that deserves some respect. After the first of the year, watch out knitters - crochet is making a comeback.

Monday, November 21, 2011


It's so close to Thanksgiving - I'm trying so hard to get stuff done. It's not all coming together; things are taking longer than anticipated, both at home and at work, and there aren't enough hours in the day. Isn't there something to help that? Tonight, I'm going to knit, rather than cook. I think tomorrow night might find me skipping Knit Night and cooking instead. I still have cleaning to do and time is running out. Fortunately, most of the cleaning is detail stuff - nothing major. We're changing out a few regular recipes at the table on Thursday; nothing major, just new recipes using the same flavors - cranberries, sweet potatoes and stuffing. The turkey is getting an update as well - a little more spice rather than so plain. It should turn out really well. Hopefully, I can update over the weekend and let you know how things turned out. And, perhaps I'll even have an FO for you! Keep your fingers crossed!

Sunday, November 13, 2011

More progress

I finished the Triplicity, and am almost through with the Ice Skating Cape. I haven't taken pictures yet, but will soon. That means 2 Christmas gifts down, and two to go. It's slower than I hoped, but there's still time.

Friday, November 04, 2011

Crazy Christmas Crafts

I was going for alliteration in the title - it should be just knitting. I've been so busy knitting the past 2 weeks, it's not even funny. I haven't even been knitting for all the gifts either. I've been working on these:

And I had to write the pattern and knit one sock for the Sock Guild at The Whole Nine Yarns. Aren't they lovely? I didn't get a chance to take a picture before I had to give the sock to the guild, but I'm sure I can get a picture soon. Isn't it wonderful now that I have a decent camera again?

There are so many things to knit now. I'm finishing this shawl from Knit Purl Hunter; I just have to finish the edging. I'm also starting this project:

This will be several hand-knit gifts this year. I also have 2 pair of socks to make: one will probably be plain (the color alone might give the recipient a reason to complain, so we won't add a pattern into the mix), and the other one is this:

I thought these were quite nice men's socks - my only complaint is the yarn I have to make them in. It's Online Sock yarn, and I have to say it isn't as nice as other sock yarns. It's a little rougher on my hands than I'd really like, and it seems to be a little thinner. I'll finish the first sock hopefully soon and post a picture of that one for you to see.

As for Christmas, while I truly believe in looking forward to the wonderful celebration that it is, let's not forget the holiday this month: Thanksgiving. It is a time to give thanks for our blessings. Even if things aren't going as well as you hoped, or things look really bad, or you just feel like things can't get any worse, just remember: you are blessed with life and liberty and the pursuit of happiness (at least in this country - others, I'm not familiar with your constitution if you have one so I can't speak to that). Some don't even have that. There is more than likely a roof over your head, food in your house, shoes on your feet (if you're wearing them right not, or at least shoes to put ON your feet if you're not) and obviously electricity to read this. You have some sort of education because you are reading this. There is always something to be thankful for, and we should remember that.