A blog about fibre, wine, and all things cozy.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Time to Think Ahead

Christmas is over. The tree is still up, but the gifts are unwrapped. The left over dinner has been turned into soup, and the mess is mostly cleaned up. Now comes the next “big day” in the holiday season and the one that prompts people to make resolutions for next year, New Years Eve. It makes sense, there is a clear starting point and ending point and 365 days in between to work on that goal.

I don’t make resolutions. I know that my body feels better when I put healthy things in it, that my mood and appearance are better when I work out regularly, that I feel better about purchases when I make them with cash instead of credit, that too much booze at a party will give me a vicious hangover and not drinking enough water in a day makes me feel that same way. I know all these things and some weeks I do really well at all of them, and some weeks not as well. I don’t feel the need to makes a promise to do something “better” or “more or less frequently.” I just go about my business knowing what needs to be accomplished most days and attempting to do it. And then, I look at my stash and my knitting life in general and all that goes out the window.

Dec 2010
My stash is out of control. It is disaster waiting to happen. When I am brave, crazy enough to need something out of it, I need to have both a trained Sherpa to get me in and Search and Rescue team to help dig me out when the inevitable yarnalanche happens and I am buried. I have considered starting to take a few energy bars in with me so that if I am home alone and trapped until my husband returns, I won't starve. My stash has also started creeping into other areas of the apartment as I can no longer contain it all in one area. I recently (yesterday) went to acquire two specific balls of yarn from my stash and they weren't where I thought they would be, which means I have no idea where they are in the mess. I am pretty sure that we don't have yarn elves living in our building, (and if we do, why are they doing their job and the kitchen elves don't?) which means that the yarn is somewhere in the mess. It needs to be dealt with and I have decided that 2011 is when that is going to happen. So I am going Cold Sheep and not buying anything new until the DKC Knitters frolic in April. I will still accept gifted yarn, which is truly a big part of the problem. I will not try to blame my addiction on others, but I do have a lot of enablers in my life. Yarn, especially pretty yarn, means that I am an easy person to buy for. Even my brother in law, who knows nothing about yarn, walked into my favourite knitting store and came out with four balls of sock yarn and a gift card for me. I am both spoiled and blessed. (My WIPS are out of control too. But that one's pretty straight forward to understand.)
So here I am at the end of 2010 and I am making resolutions. I will knit solely from my stash until April 30th. I will get the one day reprieve and then no new yarn until Canada day, July 1st. I will stop ignoring the spinning wheel that I have on loan from my best friend. And I will be an active member of the 111 in 2011 group on Raverly. I am determined to use 111 balls this year. I will do all these things and at the end of 2011, I will have a far more functional stash and a calmer knitting life. I will control the addiction and stop letting it control me. I can do all these things, and I will keep telling myself that this is not a punishment. These are my resolutions. What are yours?

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas to everyone!  I hope that there have been a few minutes of knitting time for you.  I finally was able to open the magic box.  I have to say, I am a very spoiled knitter.  This is what I found first.
Then, I opened the inside package and found more goodies.
The whole package looks like this.

My Husband is enjoying his Christmas knitting too.
I wish you all a fibre filled day and that whatever you are doing, you're having a great one. Cheers.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

How to Vex a Knitter

My Husband was kind enough to order me yarn from my favourite indy dyer, IndigoDragonFly, for Christmas.  I have been forbidden from even touching the box until we open our gifts on Christmas Eve.  So this is what's under my tree.  The message is from Kim, and my husband thought it was more fun to taunt me with it then wrap it any further.  Sigh.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

I am off the Wagon

I am off the wagon so hard that all I can see are the plumes of dust rising from the earth as I try to stand up and clean myself off. Back in September, I exclaimed loudly to my Husband that until I had all 
 the gifts made, I would not cast on anything new, unless it was a Holiday gift. I would permit myself to work on pre-existing projects, but nothing new. I already had a few gifts knit, as I try to get at least a few out of the way throughout the year, but I still had quite a few more to go. And, I'll be damned if the proclamation didn't actually work. I stuck it out and my gifts are finished. (I will admit, I did sneak this little dice bag in right at the very end.) So that revelation happened on Monday, and today is Wednesday, and I want to cast on EVRYTHING. I have yarn that I paired with projects months ago that are all waiting to be picked up and loved. I have projects on the needles that I want to get back too and try to finish. I want to grow extra arms and hands so I can do it all at once. I want to see just how many more finished items I can sneak in before the year 2010 is gone and 2011 begins. My head is spinning with possibilities. I'm not really sure where to go next, but I'm pretty sure it needs to involve having knitting needles in my hands. (I will try not to be too resentful of the fact that I am going out this afternoon to finish my Husband's Christmas shopping.) I wish you all a happy knitting day and if I don't surface again anytime soon send a search party. It means I’m lost in my stash.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

A Miracle has Happened

Yesterday I was too exhausted to consider doing anything of real substance. So I sat myself down on my sofa and finished a hat that I had on the needles for my friend Josh T. By the end of the day, the hat was done even though I had ripped one of the earflaps out because it looked wrong. I tossed it aside to take some photos of it and then picked up the blanket I'm making for my husband and I and worked on that for a bit. It wasn't until this morning that I realized that I am finished my Christmas knitting. I texted my husband and told him the good news then headed out to the gym. It didn't really sink in at that point, (I openly admit that I am not the brightest crayon in the box first thing in the morning.)

The Final Gift
So I get to the gym and am running at a fairly good pace on the treadmill when the realization really hits me. “Holy s**t, I'm done my Christmas knitting. How the F**K did that happen?” I think I said that last part out loud. It's takes another second to fully sink in and I stop running. (You will note that I said I stopped running. Not the treadmill stopped moving. This lead to me having a moment of superb grace and beauty as I had to scramble to stay upright. I did avoid falling on my face, but only just.) In that moment, after I recovered from my Bambi meets ice moment and I caught my breath, the sun seemed to shine a little brighter and the falling snow seemed that much prettier and a wonderful calm passed over me. This is a stark contrast to last year when I burst into tears realizing that there was no way I was ever going to finish the last of the gifts in time. In all the years I have been making Christmas gifts, this has never happened. I will not actually have to finish gifts on the way to parties or shove a darning needle into my husband's hand and force him weave ends while I bind off a project. I still do have to weave in a few ends, and figure out how to make the Kitty Pi that did not felt small enough a little more cat bed like. (I love my Husband, but I am not willing to accept the answer, “Thing is really old, this will be easier for him to get in and out of” as a solution.) But damn, the knitting is finished.

To all of my knitting friends who are still in the midst of the Christmas knitting craziness, I wish you the best of luck in finishing. I have been in your shoes many, many times. But now, if you'll excuse me, I think I will celebrate with a glass of Chardonnay.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Moments of Joy

I've been very fortunate in the last week that I have had two moments of true joy associated with my knitting. The first made me smile a whole body type smile. The second, uncontrollable giggling.

The first came from talking to my 90 year old grandmother. In the middle of our conversation, she blurted out that she “loved the beautiful shawl that I made last year for my Aunt.” (It's a Clapotis made in red bamboo.) So when she was visiting her a few weeks ago, she “borrowed” it and now whenever she gets cold “she wraps herself up and rolls around in it.” I can't even type this without smiling. You have to understand that my Grandmother lives in a tiny town in Northern Ontario. She's right on the North Shore of Lake Superior, so it's cold up there. She must wear the shawl all the time. I love knowing that she's happy to have it and that she's feeling my love from all the miles away just by staying warm. (I am a little sad for my Aunt, who has now lost two years of knitted Christmas gifts to other people. She needs to stop showing things off.)

The second is when my package from the World Domination /Smart-Ass Knitters group arrived. Admittedly that on it's own is enough to make me happy. Really, what knitter wouldn't be pleased to have a package with gorgeous hand-dyed yarn delivered to them. But this package was extra special. I knew that this package also contained the lace weight that I had ordered from IndigoDragonfly back in November. She was good enough to hold it for me and toss it in with my package so when she made her next delivery to the city everything would come at once and I wouldn't have to pay for shipping. So the package is given to me and I tear into it with the enthusiasm of a very small child in a very big candy store. (Just for the record, my husband is very methodical when he opens presents. It drives me insane. Tear into the damn things would you!!!!!) 

First I pulled out my two skeins of lace weight. The colourway, Slutty Thursday Afternoon Things. (Kim really names her colourways better then anyone else I know.) The appropriate amount of fondling was completed before reaching for my “club yarn.” I spent a few minutes going completely gaga over the colour and the fact that it's Cashmere before noticing the name of the colourway. The name you ask? F**K You. No, I'm not making this up. (All of the colour names have a story behind them. This one Kim claims is for all of us who have wanted to scream it out at the top of our lungs. Thinking she was a shade frustrated with life when coming up with this name.) So, I line up all my new yarn and I start giggle snorting and finally manage to compose myself long enough to enquire what exactly is being implied about my personality by sending me both “Slutty” and “F You” in the same package? I don't know. Maybe you have to know one, or both of us to find it funny, but I gotta say I was having an “F You” kind've day at that point and thinking about that made me giggle every single time and helped turn a crummy day into a much better one.
"F" You

Oh, there is one last joy. Not having to do any Holiday knitting today. Not because I'm finished, but because I feel like I can take a little break without going nuts. Maybe this will be the year of miracles.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Changing Seasons

The falling snow

It's snowing here again today. Which most people seem to think that, as a knitter, I should really like. I think that a lot of non-fibre people have this romantic notion about the onset of winter causing knitters to merrily frolic through all their knitted goods pulling stuff out and bundling themselves and their loved ones up in a bunch of handmade goodness. Maybe there are knitters who do that. I can, however, assure you that I am not one of them.

I hate winter. I hate it with a passion. I hate the crummy road conditions. I hate the leaving work in the afternoon in the pitch black. And really when it comes right down to it, I don't like snow. Until my knitting can find a way to shovel the snow and make the sun stay longer, I will continue to hate winter. (Just for the record I think that fall is a much better time for knitters. My heavier knitted goods serve me well in the fall.)

More Snow
The changing seasons do affect my knitting. There is something about the short cold days that changes what I want to knit. For me, I want to stay indoors and hide from the outside. (I know lots of people that ski and snowboard and actually like winter. Me? My ideal winter day involves a hot beverage, a lot of wool, and other knitters sitting around in my favourite LYS lamenting about the nicer weather that we all miss.) I want to knit something big and heavy that going to get me through the winter months. I am more likely to cast on a sweater in the winter and be willing to give it a fairly solid commitment. I want a project that has to sit in my lap while I knit it because an afghan keeping you warm while you knit is a welcome gift in the middle of winter. (Anyone who has ever experienced temperatures in the -20 C range can back me up on that.) I am also more likely to knit something for myself. Though I think that has more to do with being finished the Christmas knitting than anything else. Winter is when I want to sink my teeth into something big and time consuming that will help me get through the nasty cold.

This year, I am well supplied with enough yarn in my stash for at least three sweaters. Plus, I still have a cute summer cardi on the needles 'cause it just didn't get finished in time to wear it this past summer. Maybe I will save that one for closer to the end of winter. It can be my little knitted light at the end of the tunnel and something to remind me that warmer days and smaller projects really are just around the corner. And in the middle of February, when it's freezing and dark I will look at that little cardi and try to believe that at some point winter really does end.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

The Uphill Battle Continues

Almost there.  Scoobie Mitte

I am continuing the uphill slog that is the Holiday gift knitting. It's slow and painful the way that wading through waist deep leech infested swamp water would be. I am hoping that by the time I post this the Scoobie Mitts that I am working on for Steve will be finished.  The Scoobie Mitts are actually an incredibly mind-numbingly boring knit, but they are fast and portable and it has become a tradition that every male friend or family member has received a pair from me. (Hence the name. Scoobie Mitts means you are part of the Scoobie Gang. Yes, I am a huge Buffy fan.) This pair was specifically requested of me this year since the recipient did not receive his pair last year as he should have. (His lovely wife told me to make him a hat, which I did. Turns out he wanted a pair of the mitts.)

I was hoping to have the mitts and a hat finished by the time this is posted, but I know I'll be happy if just the mitts are finished. I do unfortunately have other things to do this morning that will interfere with my knitting time. (If anyone out there has figured out how to do your dishes and knit at the same time please let me know.)

I have figured out that this is the problem. This needing to always have more finished really drives me insane at this time of year when it comes to my knitting. I realized that it's not the knitting that I am not enjoying. I still love knitting. It's not having the moment of gratification that comes with finishing a project. Think about it. Whenever we as knitters finish a projects, we all have that moment where you look at the knitting and (hopefully) admire it. You get to let a little sigh escape your lips as you think, “this is cute”, or “thank god it's done”, or “I love it.” If it's a really big project that has taken up a lot of time or required great effort, I've noticed that the phrase “I have no idea what to knit now even though I have 5 other projects on the needles” is really very normal. This is what I'm missing and craving. Now when a gift is finished, I think “great, another one finished. Now I have to start the hat for my Father-in-Law.” And the aforementioned finished gift gets tossed into the finished pile. This is why I love gift knitting in June and kind of hate it at this time of year. In June I get to have that moment of reflection that I don't get to have now. The hurried feeling also pours over into the rest of my knitting and I start feeling the pressure of all my WIPS wanting to be FO's and I can't get to them. I can't finish things as quickly as I would like and to accommodate the knitting and the training for a 10k run in May and a 75K bike ride in June things like the dishes get ignored. Clearly things get out of balance in my life and that drives me insane. And I need that gratification.

So, today I will finish the mitts. I will then pour myself a cup of coffee and admire the mitts. When the coffee is gone, I will only then cast on the new project and I will try to convince myself that I am doing okay this year and that I will not be weaving in ends on a scarf while my husband is driving us to a Christmas party where the scarf is being presented. (You can laugh, but if this hasn't already happened to you it will one day. If you are the type of knitter that this never happens to, I bow down before you.) I will take a deep breath and I will enjoy my FO. Then I will figure out just how quickly I can knit that damn hat.

And, they are finished! 

Saturday, November 20, 2010

It's that time of year.

It is that time of year again where some of us break out the holiday gift knitting. I try to be a good gift knitter and finish a few projects throughout the year. But lets be honest, major gift knitting doesn't happen until the autumn. It's not until the pressure of an actual deadline starts creeping in and Christmas starts looming that I really think it's time to start.

Now, let me begin by stating that I actually do enjoy holiday gift knitting for my friends and family. My reasons are very simple. First, I am very unfortunate in that pleased that most people I know are wonderful recipients of handmade objects and I think that they actually look forward to receiving something each year. The second advantage, I don't like malls at the best of times. I hate malls during the lead up to the holiday. (Though my Husband claims that the key is to shop before the first snow fall. Until those first snow flakes drift to the ground, people don't seem to feel the need to rush to the malls and spend their hard earned cash on much of anything holiday related.) I hate the crowds and the pushy sales people and the potential for a nasty credit card bill in January. My actual shopping is limited to just a few places and I am more than happy to keep it that way. And finally, some of my best gift memories include receiving handmade gifts. It makes sense that I would want to pass that on.

I think it's important that I put that all on paper before I start explaining the next bit. There reaches a point in the process where I just don't want to do it anymore. It happens every single year. I want to knit anything, and I do mean anything else. Projects that have been buried in the bottom of my knitting basket for months start calling to me. Projects that I have lined up in my stash closet are always on my mind. Those damn socks by Gleena C have been taunting me since they arrived in my Smart-Ass Knitters package.
I can't fully explain why this happens. I am happy to give away my knitting to people that I know are going to appreciate it. I have no trouble parting with my knitted objects, (well expect for the Lizard Ridge Blanket. I did think seriously about giving it to my Mother in Law because she gushed over it in a way that nothing I have made before has been gushed over. In the end, I kept mine and made one for her. I'm looking forward to her reaction when she opens it.) I am happy to knit for myself and equally enjoy knitting for others. I already have gifts for next year planned out . I really like doing this.

I do have two theories about this. First, I always seem to underestimate the time a project is going to take. I firmly believe that I am either the worlds fastest knitter, or that I have way more time in a day to knit than I actually do. Secondly, it's the “wanting what you can't have” syndrome. I stated loudly to my Husband back in September that “I was not casting on anything new unless it was gift knitting until all the gifts were finished.” (I did include that working on items already on the needles, whither gift knitting or not would still be permitted.) It's worked so far, but really want everything else. I'm actually starting to go a little nuts right now.
Love the buttons
 So, in order to maintain my sanity I will sew the buttons on my Sister in Law's cowl and complete one side of the duplicate stitches that need to be done on a friend's scarf and I am going to spend the rest of today and tomorrow knitting something completely different. It's a guilty pleasure that won't go right to my hips or make me feel like I have to add more time on the treadmill to make up for it. Hmmm......knitting as a healthy lifestyle aid. I like it.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

A quick Update

A Bunch of Little Gifts!
The sachets are finished. Each one needs a little extra tightening around the ends, but otherwise they are finished. I'm mostly pleased with them, and even more pleased that they have entered the "finished" Christmas gift pile. And they do smell really pretty.    

Sunday, November 7, 2010

It's the Little Things

When I was a child, I remember my mom saying to me, "it's not the big things in life that will drive you crazy. It's all the little stuff." Many years later I can say that she was right. (There mom, I said you were right. Here on the internet where the whole world can see it. Enjoy this moment :)

And this week, it has been the little things that have pushed me the edge of a knitting temper tantrum. It has been these,  the candy wrapper sachets from the book OneSkein.
There will be six in total and each one is meant to accompany a "soap sack" that I made earlier. Each little set is a Christmas gift. This means that a big chunk of my Christmas knitting will be finished and maybe I won't have a panic attack this year as Christmas approaches. (That last bit is probably just wishful thinking. I will find a reason to panic.)

Fresh Lavender
The Soap Sacks went off without a hitch. There is few spots where I missed a yarn over, but nothing to complain or stress about and since they are handmade, there will always be a little designer feature here and there. The sachets were started after and I figured that in total, they should take me about six hours of my knitting life to make. They are small, simple, and straightforward. It's the type of knitting I can take anywhere. It's super portable and doesn't need a lot of my attention. When they are finished, I will fill each with some of this lavender from my friend's garden and six entire gifts will be finished.

This is the theory anyway. And I still think it was a good theory. But, as we all know theory and practice can be two very different things. This simple little additions have been nothing but a nightmare from the first one I cast on the needles. The first three were each cast on three times. That's right, if you do the math that means I did nine Cast On's for three projects. NINE!!!! Apparently I can knit cables, lace, and entralac with relative ease. But these are the thorn in my side, my burden, my knitting nemesis. I've found myself asking, “what the hell is wrong with me?” more then once while working on these. At different times I have, apparently lost the ability to count, forgotten to do eyelets on both sides of the round, I've dropped stitches and not noticed for a really long time relatively speaking, run out of yarn, and while I’m sitting and typing I am realizing that I completely forgot to pick up the empty tea bags I need to stuff the lavender into. I walked right past the tea store and even thought about how nice it would be to stop in for a quick drink. This is where I'm at. My knitting cockiness is being taken down a few notches by a simple little sachet and they are forcing me to pay way more attention to them then I think they deserve.

I'm almost finished the fifth one. I think I've finally figured it out. I may yet reknit the first one, just because I'm not happy with how it looks. Maybe after it's stuffed I'll think it looks better. I am really hoping that these will be finished today. I think I’ll contemplate them over the cup of tea I wanted yesterday. I hope they have empty tea bags in stock.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010


So I opened up my blog to check on something in the design tab and noticed another little tab labelled Stats and decided to click on it. What I saw shocked me. People, people I know, other than my Husband and parents have actually taken the time to read my blog. People I know, like, and respect, have been here poking around. Some of you more then once. I have to admit that I was, and still am, a little dumbfounded by this. My next thought was, “oh shit. Here I am rambling about whatever the hell is going on in my head and I haven't been really paying that much attention to grammar and now people are reading my grammatically incorrect craziness about nothing, and.................” I think you get the point.
My next thought was, “well you did put this up on the internet. It was inevitable that someone, somewhere, at some point, might actually stumble upon this and take the time to read it. AND you did add this to Ravelry home page. Lots of people you know go there and see your knitting. There is a link there!!!” Still, it never occurred to me that friends might read it. Strangers, that I was prepared for. Friends, not so much.

With that thought in mind, I feel the need to explain. After giving it a lot of thought, well over a years worth, I decided to start this blog. I has been started with he intention of getting my lazy self back into writing. There was a time when I did a lot of writing. I wrote my first “story” when I was very young and even did my own illustrations. (That's how I know I was really young. If you know me well, you know I can't draw. I would never ever have the nerve to do that as an adult.) By the age of 13, I was convinced I was going to grow up and have a least one published novel. There have been a few short stories over the years, but certainly nothing novel worthy. And as the years have passed, I write less and less. Partly because I seem to be way busier in my life and partly because now I leave the house with my knitting instead of my notebook. This is not a complaint, just a fact. I thought that a blog might force me to have some accountability and even if it is just a ramble a week, at least it's a little writing again.
So there you have it. The reason for all this. If you do take the time to read it, I hope you enjoy it, and I will try to pay a little more attention to my grammar.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

I Have Discovered Knitting Bliss!

Friday evening, my knitterly type friend Petra and her husband dropped in for a glass of wine and some general chatting time. Petra had a birthday this past week and she brought her birthday gift along to show me. She was super excited about it and I was expected some new cool yarn, or a couple of pairs of Signature Needles. But instead what she presented to my Husband and I was a Roomba. You know, one of those little robot automatic vacuum cleaner, floor sweeper things. It's round and flat and has bumpers on it. You push the button and the little guy, (whom she instantly named MOE after the cleaning robot from Wall-E,) starts roaming around and cleaning your floors. When it is finished, it will apparently find it's way home to it's docking bay where it recharges for the next use. I have to admit, the first ten minutes of our visit  was spent holding a glass of wine while giggling about little MOE cleaning my floors. It really is a toy for adults and by the end you sort of feel like you should be patting it on the head and telling it what a good job it did.

And at some point it struck me, this should be on the top of every knitters “must have” list. Now any non-knitters will probably be a little confused and thinking, “what the hell does an automatic vacuum have to do with knitting.” And they'd be a little right. It's not yarn, or needles, or patterns, or one of the other millions of knitting gadgets that we all have. I suppose that you could make it a cozy.  However I think that might interfere with it's little sensor and lets be honest, it doesn’t need to be kept warm. (Though, apparently if you have cats it doubles as a kitty ride and babysitter.) My knitter friends would already have this one figured out though. It's the gift of time and a slightly cleaner home.
Most of us knitters would rather spend way more time knitting then we already do. Unfortunately the real world does get in the way and there are things you just can't do while knitting. Cleaning the floor is one of those accursed things. So then the knitter is faced with a choice. Will I allow cleaning time to cut into my knitting time, or will my knitting time cut into my cleaning time. I know that for me, (and most every other knitter I know – this really is a common problem,) the choice is clear. Knit. That's it, just knit. That being said, we don't live in a pig trough. Our dishes get done, we do laundry weekly because I hate the thought of having laundry mountains taking over our bedroom, the sheets are changed once a week, and things generally get put back where they belong since I hate clutter. But, dusting, sweeping, cleaning the bathtub, and fridge, those things that would take me from fairly organized to super tidy and verging on “Martha” standards, those things don't always get done as often as they should. (My husband has to make the same choice as all those things can't be occurring while he engages is his hobby of playing Starcraft with the boys. He is amazing at a great many things, but I can't imagine him balancing a laptop in hand hand while trying to sweep with the other.)
Enter the little Roomba. Really think about this. You could get up on any random day, pour yourself your favourite cup of morning libation, turn on the Roomba, curl up on the sofa with your drink and your knitting and be cleaning your floors at the same time. Seriously, this is an awesome concept. Multitasking at it's best. I have never been able to justify the thought of a hiring a cleaner for a 720 sq foot apartment, but this, a little rechargeable robot that will happily clean my floors while I knit, this I can justify.
My own birthday is coming up and I have made it clear that this is what I want. I want a MOE of my very own. I promise that I will make sure his docking station is always plugged in so he will always be feed and I will take him out for a exercise three times a week. He will be well taken care of and never get bored. I will cherish him and the knitting time that he will give back to me. Now just to figure out how to get my knitting bags off the floor...................

Sunday, October 24, 2010

How it all Began

I think that as knitters there is a time when we can first remember our introduction to the craft.  Mine was in the form of a hand made teddy bear.  My grandmother lovingly craft him for me so I would have company during a visit to the hospital.  It had a big white belly and a pink head and legs.  It was all garter stitch and at the time I really didn't understand that it was knit, just handmade for me by my grandmother.  I loved my bear, (whom I named Pinky - I was four,) and he kept me company in my bed.

Fast forward a few years, and my mom very briefly took up knitting while at work.  She made me two sweaters that I remember.  (There may have been three.)  I do remember having to trek to the closest city to find a LewisCraft and picking out my yarn.  I chose a slubby multicoloured acrylic yarn that must have been an absolute nightmare for a novice knitter to use. But she finished the sweater and I loved it.

A few years later while in high-school, I was at a friend's house with a group of girls, and a girl named Tanya, pulled out a sweater and started knitting. I have no idea what colour or pattern she was using, but I was amazed and intrigued. It was first time the thought, "I could do that," crept into my head. By that point, my tiny little town had acquired a tiny little craft store and in the front corner there was one little display of a few patterns, needles, and some basic acrylic yarns. Having no idea what I was doing, I bought some yarn, needles, and a pattern for a zodiac inspired sweater. I took it all home, tossed it and myself on my bed, and attempted to learn to knit. Well, that didn’t go so well, and after about a week, it all got stuffed into my closet and forgotten about. To this day, I have no knowledge of what happened to any of it. (I think that might be for the best, as my tastes have certainly improved since I was a teenager. Or at least that's what I tell myself.)

And that was it. I didn't think about knitting again. I didn't feel like my life was lacking by not having knitting in it. I still thought about my Pinky from time to time, but never in the sense of wanting to learn how to make one for myself. Until about seven years ago. That's when I met my knitting guru and everything changed. (We bonded immediately due to the fact that we share a name with the same spelling.) I realized very quickly that she knew how to knit. Now I realize that she is a Knitter, not just a person who knits. After watching her for a long time over the coarse of a number of visits, I very timidly asked her to teach me to knit. In no time, were in a local craft supply store and I purchased a pair of metal needles and a ball of burgundy acrylic yarn to knit with. She patiently taught me how to cast on and how to do the knit stitch. She also very patiently dealt with the numerous questions that I had and the wailing and whiny about the whole process. My first finished object was a garter knit square. It took me forever and I think I spent half the time hating the whole process, but I am an insanely stubborn women and was determined to finish what I started. I clearly remember saying to my Husband that "I have no idea why people enjoy this or how they ever finished anything!" But, I stuck with it mostly due to my guru not letting me back away. Next there was purling, and cabling, and really good books and pretty patterns and trips to yarn shops. At some point, without even noticing, I started to like knitting. Somehow, from those first moments of disbelief that this was something I would ever be good at or enjoy I was a Knitter! It was an amazing moment for me.

Now, I wonder what the hell I did before I picked up the needles. I knit a lot. I've helped teach friends, and at least a few dozen children. I have a very spoiled Husband who receives many knitted items from me and proudly has worn all of them. I have a stash that is taking up way to much space in the apartment that we live in. There is a spinning wheel with my latest spinning project waiting to be finished and two baskets of knitting projects sitting under my coffee table. I have favourite designers and will buy anything dyed by IndigoDragonFly over almost anything else. I do volunteer work for Knitty.com. I've tried my hand a designing once, but realized I wasn't quite there yet. Maybe in the future. For now, I am happy to knit and spin and surround myself with beautiful wool and yarn and needles. I am proud to say that I am A Knitter!