I’ve had some strife in my extended family lately that has been getting me down, which has forced me to examine just what and who is “family,” and whether or not just because someone has the label of family it means that they hold some special power over me that defines my place in the world. I’m slowly coming around to the realization that what makes a family is not always just the people to whom you’re connected by blood or marriage or some other circumstance that causes your life experiences to be intertwined. A family can happen anywhere, in any way, as long as there are people somewhere who love you. I have a family of my own, and in it are people who love me. And there are others who are not family, who I know love me just as much. I have been blessed in this life with good friends to whom I am bonded as a sister to brother, or sister to sister, and for those people I am most grateful.
So my cup runneth over. And yet, when just a few have made me sad, or made me feel less a member of their clan than I had hoped I was, somehow, it still managed to rock my world. I’ve been struggling over these past few weeks to not discount all that I do have, surrounding and supporting me, and not letting those who would discount me, intentionally or unintentionally, define who I am. It’s funny how those who should be the most insignificant wind up having the biggest impact, like the proverbial sore thumb. But I will get past it. I am getting better, even if it is just a little bit every day.In the meantime, I am knitting. It’s just a scarf for now, but it is all that I can manage. I’m nearing the end of my knitting on my friend Jennifer’s scarf. In just a day or two I am going to add really long fringe on it and call it done. For the life of me I don’t know why I am attracted to so many scarves–as projects they are positively endless and I never can keep myself from tiring of them long before they are finished. But, I am stealing every possible moment to knit this before I see my friend Jennifer next week. Here I am, knitting on my lunch hour with my friend Karen from work. Karen, who I met in the bathroom on the fifth floor of my office, of all places, because we both commented on the lovely cables in another woman’s hat. They were the sort of comments that only a knitter would make, so we became instantly bonded as we washed our hands in the automatic sinks. We try to get together every couple of weeks or so, to marvel at each other’s projects and share knitting gossip. but mostly it’s so we can throw down a couple of rows during lunch before having to face a stressful afternoon in the cube farm. It helps, it really does. And I’m so lucky to have made a new friend.
Book Review: Knitting for Baby
I recently purchased the book, Knitting for Baby: 30 Heirloom Projects with Complete How-to-Knit Instructions by Kristin Nicholas and Melanie Falick. I was a little nervous about buying a book with learn-to-knit instructions already in it, because, well, I already know how to knit. And, in general, I hate those knitting books that have overly-simplified instructions followed by a bunch of impossible projects, as if someone who’s just learning to knit is going to turn out designer sweaters at the get-go. But for once, this book makes absolute sense, and I applaud the authors’ decision to make it a learn-to-knit book. Lots of people learn to knit for the first time with the impending arrival of a baby, so isn’t it great to have a book for beginners that is also filled with adorable little things to knit?
Kristin Nicholas and Melanie Fallick are just about two of my most favorite designers, and this book did not disappoint me. I love just about every project in this book. I love how it starts out with the basics, and gives you a few projects to work on, then adds a skill, and a few more projects featuring that skill, and so on. Even the most basic designs at the beginning of the book are as cute as can be, though… so even if you’re a more seasoned knitter this book is still worth a look. You’ll find everything from practical booties and hats, to beautiful sweaters, and whimsical little toys. There’s always a new baby coming in my family, as many cousins and nieces as there are, so I am quite sure that this book will get lots of use around here!