A Life With Actual Knitting In It

Note from Sandi: Welcome to my little corner of Knitting Daily! Every Thursday, I'll be sharing stories of my knitting adventures, as well as some tips and tricks I've learned along the way. Thanks for coming by!

It's been a bad week for knitting in Ye Olde Wiseheart House. Sock Summit left me gloriously mind-boggled with new techniques, new yarns, and new friends. However, the day I arrived back home, it was ten days until Moving House Day—and since then I've found myself wielding a tape gun and Sharpie rather than a spindle or knitting needles.

At night, when the packing is done-for-the-day, I've been too weary to keep the needles moving. In the evenings, more often than not, I've looked down at the knitting in my lap only to discover that I'm merely holding the needles in my hands, yarn loose at my side. Twice, I've fallen asleep in my chair with my knitting needles cradled in my hands like some sort of talisman against bad dreams. Other times, I stow the knitting away…but my hands then wander and fidget and fuss, as though seeking solace from the needles that are usually their constant companions.

I miss my knitting.

I typed that sentence, and re-read what I wrote…and it stopped me cold. What am I doing here? Why am I living a life so crazy with moving and writing-about-knitting-for-work that there is so little space for actual knitting in it? After all, I'm boxing up my house, not my heart. Knitting is far more to me than just a paycheck; knitting feeds my spirit, relaxes my mind, calms my body, and helps me stay sane in a rather insane world.

Pretty important stuff to be giving up on, don't you think? And yet…I bet I am not alone. How many of us knitters (or spinners or crafters of any sort) give up our crafting time when the world presses too closely around us, demanding more and more of our precious energy, like an overgrown (and rather spoiled) toddler? Usually, our beloved crafting time is one of the first things to go when our to-do lists start exploding…

I suppose that would make sense if knitting was "just a hobby," as so many people might say. I don't know about you, but that word "hobby" stopped applying to my knitting and spinning probably within the first day of learning to do the knit stitch or draft that marvelous fiber out into yarn. From that day forward, I was in love—and love in all forms helps keep us healthy and strong for whatever else life might toss at us.

So this evening, after having a little talk with myself, I put down the tape gun and went in search of my little black Bolero project, the one from Interweave's book Feminine Knits, and promised myself one uninterrupted hour of knitting time as medicine for my cranky, tired, yarn-hungry heart.

In that one hour, I worked 29 rows, all in all—one-third the way through the right front piece. Such a small thing, and yet I feel a bit clearer, a bit more feet-on-the-ground, a bit more ready to face the moving truck.

Making time for knitting every day (or spinning, or whatever yarnly craft has stolen our hearts) isn't just making time for ourselves in a selfish sort of way—it's making time for that which nourishes our hearts and hands, ensuring that we then have the strength to lend those hearts and hands to others as our crazy lives demand.

I'm off to do a few more rows before bedtime now, late on Tuesday night. On Thursday, as you read this, and as we load up the moving truck, my knitting will be on the kitchen counter, ready to have a few stitches worked in tiny stolen moments, to keep my heart fed during a busy, crazy day. I hope you also find time to nourish your own yarn-hungry heart this week.


Knit with joy (as shall I!)…

– Sandi

Next week: If I haven't been eaten alive by self-multiplying zombie moving boxes, I'll try to write a little on what I learned about wrangling a lace pattern as you add or decrease stitches. I found a couple tricks that work for me, so maybe they'll be of use to you, too!

P.S. Let me know what you think! You can leave a comment below or even email me at [email protected].

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