Sunday, August 28, 2011

Sunday Evening

I've been battling a virus all weekend, not desperately ill, but just feeling crummy. I've felt too guilty to gripe, though, since so many folks on the coast have been dealing with a hurricane and my biggest problem has been a low-grade fever and achy joints.

So this evening I'm contenting myself with watching "Julie and Julia" on Lifetime, sipping iced coffee (yum!) and knitting a market bag. I started the market bag last weekend as a Christmas gift for one of my co-workers and have been working on it off and on during the past week. Just a row here and there. Amazingly enough, I think I'll finish it before bedtime tonight. I'm now working on the top band just before starting the handle.

This is the third of these market bags I've made; it's a great pattern, pretty easy knitting, and makes a neat gift. If you're on (and if you're not, you SHOULD be!!) you can click here to see the Grrlfriend Market Bag. It's a free download, and you can knit it up from just about any kind of yarn you have on hand. I knit the first two from a cotton/linen blend of yarn I had, and I'm making this one from the same type of cotton yarn I use for dishcloths. It's working up really nicely....I'm very pleased!

And so, friends, back to "Julie and Julia", my iced coffee, and my market bag, all of which are patiently waiting for me to finish this blog post. :-)

Have a great evening, everyone!

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Cricket's a Year Older!

Yes, today's my birthday! I'm not going to try to hide my age, because it's probably pretty obvious that the "54" in Cricket54 is my birth year. *LOL*

It's been a good birthday, even if I did have to go to the office today. My friends at work gave me lots of lovely cards, gifts, and congratulatory e-mails. My Facebook friends showered me with birthday wishes. And I treated myself to a wonderful birthday dinner from Cracker Barrel.

So now, stuffed full and happy, I'm going to settle into my recliner with my knitting (nearly finished with the gusset on my socks) and watch one of my birthday gifts: the anniversary edition of "The Big Lebowski".

The Dude abides.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Geek/Knitter Moment

This evening I'm enjoying a total geek/knitter moment. I bought myself a Roomba and can now knit and vacuum at the same time. *LOL*

You gotta love technology!

A New Knitter

Saturday I went to the reunion of my Dad's side of the family. I don't know how your family reunions go, but ours involve a large crowd of relatives, (usually) hot weather, and TONS of delicious food! There are plenty of good cooks in the family, and it always shows at a reunion.

Ever since I started knitting I carry a project bag to the reunion. I don't play the outdoor games at the reunion because it's too dang hot, and the indoor games are usually cake walks or bingo which are more fun to watch than to actually do. So I knit and visit with relatives.

By Saturday afternoon the heat had taken a toll on several of the kids who'd been playing outdoors. At that time I was sitting on the porch of the Ruritan building where we were having the gathering, knitting some dishcloths I'd been working on for Christmas gifts.

A very polite young girl named Cara (or Kara, I'm not sure how she spells it) who turned out to be related to me by marriage through a second cousin came and sat on the bench beside me and began asking questions about what I was doing. I spent the next few minutes giving her a very broad overview of knitting: "just making loops of this cotton yarn with these metal needles". When I saw that she was really paying attention, I handed her the dishcloth I was knitting and taught her a knit stitch. She picked it up quickly, and I showed her a purl stitch. It was such fun to watch her face light up when she saw that she was actually KNITTING! Now I know why teachers enjoy their work when they have attentive students.

When the time came for her to get ready to leave, I bound off the triangle of knitted material she'd been working with and gave it to her for a souvenir. Her mother came to thank me for teaching her, and I told her in all honesty that it had been as much fun for me as it had for her.

A good Saturday!

Monday, August 1, 2011

Knitting Socks: Sanity Saver!

Last weekend was a particularly rough one. Friday evening my dear little 70-plus aunt took a particularly nasty fall; she broke her nose and wound up being airlifted from her home (about two hours driving-time away from me) to the hospital only 3 miles from my apartment. I'll get to the important part first: she lost a frightening amount of blood (she's on blood thinner), she's terribly bruised and awfully sore, but she's back home now and the doctors say she's going to be okay, thank goodness!

Oddly enough, fate had prepared me better than normally. My little car was full of gas, I had plenty of cash on hand (well....plenty for me, anyway), and my Kindle was in my purse. As I ran out the door to try to beat the helicopter to the hospital, I grabbed a partially-knitted pair of socks from the basket beside my recliner and dropped them into my purse.

Because the socks I threw into my bag were my favorite "plain vanilla" socks, I was able to stand outside the trauma room while waiting for procedures to be done and knit away. (Knit 3, purl 1 on top of the foot, plain knit on the sole.) Round and round, over and over. The repetition helped center me, and I was able to be calm and reassuring when I spoke with my aunt.

Circumstances were such that she had to be transferred to another hospital; I stayed with her all night and until late Saturday afternoon. Knitting helped keep me awake and available at a moment's notice each time she needed anything. It had been YEARS since I'd pulled an "all-nighter", and knitting those plain socks was unbelievably helpful. As I told a nurse in the wee hours of the morning Saturday, knitting is cheaper than therapy. Not to mention the fact that you get some pretty interesting socks in the deal!

I'm strongly considering keeping a project bag in the car from now on, just in case of an emergency. As much as I love my Kindle (in fact, I keep tons of knitting patterns on it), reading wouldn't have been an option during a lot of the situations we dealt with over the weekend. I could knit and carry on conversations with my parents, nurses, and doctors. In fact, the knitting actually started several conversations with people, as it always does when I'm knitting in public.

If you've never knitted in public, please try it sometime. Not only is it fun and productive, you meet lots of interesting folks who are either:
  1. knitters,
  2. crocheters,
  3. would-be knitters or crocheters,
  4. folks with friends or relatives who are knitters or crocheters, or
  5. folks with memories of mothers or grandmothers who were knitters or crocheters.
And so, fellow knitsters, I leave you with this advice: Knitting is therapeutic, cheap, and non-fattening. Who can ask for anything more?