knitnana: January 2012

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Monday, January 23, 2012

My First Real Post on Ahimsa

It's taken a couple of weeks to get my head far enough above water (known in the vernacular as W-2 season) to begin to think in terms of just how I do violence to myself, how I jeopardize my sanity and sense of calm, and how I can move in the direction of Ahimsa in my own life.

This year will be about several behaviors I see as detrimental to my own health, well-being, and sanity:
1. My inability to say "no." I'm better at it than I used to be, but then I do silly things to complicate my life (usually when I'm facing some sort of stressor - which is totally crazy, because if I'm already stressing, why on earth would I say "oh, yes, please, let's add on some more!" WHY?)

2. My insistence oh competing with my (much younger) Self. I'm particularly good at this when it comes to yoga class and other types of exercise I set myself up to do. I was a dancer in my past life and from there moved on to being a better than average yoga student (I was really flexible, still am, and so being able to slip into some of the poses easily inspired the "show-off" in me!). So far, I'm keeping myself from joining up with the next level of yoga class (to the effect that right now I'm not going to yoga class! Silly me. But if I'd just do the gentle classes I'd be so much better off (as would my spine!). Now if I can just re-organize my schedule so that I start yoga class again.

3. My complete inability to part with stuff. I'm one of those "collectors" and to be fair, I was raised by one, my sister is one, too. I've passed it on to my DD (please forgive me, Sweetie, I wish I hadn't!). It's a family curse. But that's not a reason to continue the process. My goal this year is to slowly begin the unearthing process. There's another generation who could benefit from the inheritance of family items and now's the time to move those things along. But I've collected tons of things and it's really time to move the "non-inheritance" things OUT! Waiting for a yard sale isn't going to happen, so I hope to begin the process of selling things via Craigslist and ebay. If I can face it, you might even see a destash sale over on Ravelry. I have to keep reminding myself: I am NOT my stuff!

4. A few years ago, I finally got in the groove of working towards a retirement for me. Yes, I will retire, tho' at present it doesn't look as if it will be all that soon! (Blasted economy!) The plans are moving forward to increase what goes to the IRAs and conservative "investments." I use that term loosely, because it sounds ostentatious to me. I know I don't have anywhere near what I'll need, and there's a certain pride that I wear when I think of my high school friend's pronouncement a few years ago that I was the only person she knew who could probably live quite nicely on my Social Security alone (backhanded complement that it was)...Still, I'm figuring I won't be getting anything until I'm 70, and perhaps then it will be botched and whittled away by those in government who seem to think it's an entitlement program that's long overdue for its demise. (Guess how I'll be voting on that issue? Social Security is a liabilty the government owes us.) Still, I could do a lot more to pad the savings accounts, and learning to say "no" to myself on accumulation of "stuff" is part of my learning to be kind to me.

So those are the primary areas I'll be working on in the upcoming year. And in thinking of those, I happened upon a video today that showcases exactly the sort of life I'm aiming for. I talk about it a little bit over on my latest Nana Sadie's Place post. And the video is posted there, too.

Stop by my little "lifestyle" blog once in awhile (I don't post there nearly as often as I do here). Sometimes I have interesting spots I've come upon in my roaming around the blogisphere...stuff that I think really doesn't work over here on Knitnana.
(((hugs)))

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Denim and Honey Brown...

I've had an ongoing crush on this color combo, and even went so far as to create a Treasury List over on etsy with a lovely assortment of things in these hues...

So it should come as no surprise that when I found this out-of-print fabric not so long ago, I held it back just so I could make myself this bag:

Again, it's another of the new "Mera Adorned" style, with the blue denim base. I love it.

There are those who know me well, who will tell you that my compulsion with blue and brown began when this little lady came into my life:

And they would be correct.

And now there are two of them, of course...not just the little lady anymore.
*wink*

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Short & Sweet...

'cause it's been a long day and I'm tired. But I wanted to touch base and share a little knitting with you:

These are plain vanilla socks for Sis-in-law. She pulled on my heartstrings when she said all her handknit socks were in the wash...and she didn't have enough of them!

Her birthday was the first of the week, so you know I had to let her dive in my stash and pick out something she liked...this Opal was her choice and that didn't surprise me one bit. It's knitting up nicely...

And I'm done with W-2s, there's only one set of 1099s to go, and a cat show I'm woefully behind in prepping for...if you don't hear from me, you'll know where I am, right?
(((hugs)))

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

And Now for Something A Bit Different!

I promised something new in the Nana Sadie Rose line, and there's more to come, but I wanted to share this one prior to the cat show the end of the month:

The fabric is We Are Siamese from Michael Miller, a print that's retro to the core, because this print was originally on a pinwale velvet corduroy back in the 1950s. I've seen jumpers and skirts made of it and have even used some of it myself. Must admit this cotton is a lot easier to work with! The cats are a tiny bit smaller, too, but that works here especially...

But it's NOT the print that I'm excited about! About a year ago, I toyed with the idea of adding a strip to the bottom of my bags, particularly thinking of something heavyweight, and more durable than cotton. I've now made a couple of them, both using denim, and I really like the effect. It's especially good with a light fabric, as I tend to try to steer folks away from those because they soil more easily. But with this bottom, that fear is dealt with!

So we'll call this "Mera Adorned" and I'll let you know that bags in this style will be limited and by custom order only. I don't want to bring mountains of heavy fabrics into my sewing room (it's kinda getting stuffed in there already!), so at present I'm thinking dark (navy, brown, tan, black) denim or twill. As always, ask if your fabric choice will work with this and I'll work with you as best I can.

And there's a slight difference in price, but for the increase in longevity, I don't think most of my customers will mind.

(Oh, and yes, you can get a Kerri Adorned...but I think I'm limiting this to those two styles, at least for now).

Okay, I'm off to update the shop!

Friday, January 13, 2012

I Might Have Broken My No-Buy Pledge Irrevocably


But when one FALLS, shouldn't one fall for something luscious? Say, like MadelineTosh? And perhaps Hecate?

don't mind me...I'll just be sitting here knitting, you may drool amongst yourselves...
manga Smileys


(but if you're local and would like to gather a bit of this loveliness for yourself? Head over to Wyrd Sisters Yarn Shop on Franklin Rd and I'm relatively sure that Cate will enable you right into your very own private crack - er...yarn. Yeah, yarn...
;)

Thursday, January 12, 2012

It's All About the Hats! Or...Knitnana Becomes a Hooker!

(Oh I can't wait to see what results I get from Google and Facebook with that title!)

Tonight I took my first official crochet class. I'd been self-taught (as I am with most crafts). And apparently I hadn't done a rotten job, because when I was asked if I wanted to make the beginner crochet scarf or the intermediate crochet hat, I jumped at the hat...This is the hat:

It's perched so jauntily on our delightful instructor, Leslie's, head.

Leslie wrote the pattern. The hat on her head is the one she made. It's adorable and makes me smile. Leslie is a crackerjack teacher (and a middle school teacher by day, so she has great experience!). I will take more classes with Leslie. :)

And this is my crochet hat (such as it is...)

I frogged (is it called that in crochet?) several times and re-hooked (heh) to get to this point. I promise to share the finished product, tho' no doubt I will have Karen model for me, as it's hard to take a photo of one's own self...

That's Karen up there, wearing my Red Hat's hat. That's the flower my sis-in-law made me for Christmas. I decided you needed a close-up of it once I got it attached. Isn't it cool?

This is a long weekend for me. I have MLK day off, and because of that and the upcoming cat show, I took tomorrow off, too. And then of course, it's also W-2 season, so there's the vet's books and payroll reporting...

And there's a plumber coming because the City tells me I have an exceptionally high bill ("did you have guests over the holidays?" "Um, no, not 7000 gallons worth of guests"). So far, I can tell you there's no Kool Aid getting into the two toilets, which I think is half the battle...He'll be here bright and early tomorrow so no sleeping in.

Which is too bad. I'm better, but I'm not 100% yet. I could use a late entry to morning.
;)

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Onward Into January

It took another day off before I could muster enough strength to make it back to the office today. To an avalanche of work. And that's just the stuff needed to catch up...I'm still not there and not convinced my brain hasn't been replaced with cotton wool. But when I first arrived it occured to me there were a few things that might have been delivered while I was "under the weather" (why is it that always sounds so trite and nothing to compare with how things REALLY are when you're at death's door?):

Yup. A Barnes and Noble order included that lovely One Skein book. I've been looking at Cherly Oberle's Little Hanten sweater for a certain little granddaughter...and this has been in my basket for ages...when another book I liked the looks of showed up with a "free" label on it (we do think they meant to make it a free Nookbook), I took quick advantage and ordered them both. They honored the "free book" without any question (I do so like B&N) and as a result, I've purchased 2 of Barbara Bretton's two most recent Sugar Maple, Vermont knitting/witchery/fantasy/romance Nookbook novels so I could catch up with one of my favorite "heroines!"
:)
In that photo you'll also see that I succumbed to the Facebook announcement that Rowan 50 was still available - actually I think it was that Rowan 48 was back in stock, but I have that one and dearly wanted this one. A friend on Ravelry's Chronic Stitcher's group had knit socks out of this lovely ivory, purple, tan, brown Regia and I was equally bewitched by them, so...

I know Joce. I gave you a ton of grief yesterday about sharing Kate Davies' newest creation, since we're supposed to be keeping each other on a sort of informal "knit from stash" KAL.

Hm. I know, Joce, you've probably given in to the urge and not just bought the pattern. I've promised myself that I must make Sheep Heid before I even entertain the thought of purchasing the yarn for Rams and Yowes blanket. Because I'm like you and would WANT to use Jamieson & Smith Shetland Natural (even if it does mean I have to redecorate my house to go with it!). Still, I do apologize for not admitting to having already succumbed myself.

Sock yarn, tho'. That doesn't count as stash, right? Back me up, here, Steph, won't you?

Sunday, January 08, 2012

Felled by a Bug!

Wednesday I felt rotten, and dizzy, and tho' I managed to get out of bed in the morning, as I headed toward the bathroom to begin the day's ablutions, I got hit with a wave of dizziness, and turned right around and went back to bed.

I don't fight vertigo.

Thursday, I felt better enough to wander into the office, but as the morning wore on, I felt "worser and worser" as my Mom used to say. I phoned the doc, as I suspected the worser-est! Got an appointment at the end of the day, and managed to remember to say, "I've still got a payroll to do" and was hustled in right away. Temperature was 100, which for me, is HIGH! The doc commiserated, as she'd had the same bug herself the week before, prescriptions were faxed off, and I wandered (this really IS a good word for the way I felt I was moving those days) to the vet's and managed to get the payroll done.

From there, to the 24-hour grocery store (because it was later in the evening than my favorite locally-owned drugstore is open) to pick up my Rx. A line, that would have stunned anyone feeling GOOD confronted me and when I got thru to the front, was told, "it won't be ready for 40 minutes."

To say I almost cried is an understatement.

I decided to go next door to the Chinese buffet restaurant and throw Weight Watchers' caution to the winds. Egg drop soup, egg roll with hot mustard and jasmine tea: I knew that's what I needed, and of course, had a plate of spicy Asian-style food with my smallish portion of real fried-rice (not brown!)...they were surprised I didn't want any dessert, but no. I now kinda wish I'd asked for egg drop soup to go, but I didn't. (Note to self: always buy extra egg drop soup to take home when you're sick)

By Thursday night (late) I knew there would be no work for me on Friday, so called in. I spent the next two days alternately wandering around my house munching on whatever seemed to appeal (mostly peanut butter and honey sandwiches, chicken soup and saltines) and knitting on Clapotis. Friday night I decided after a few minutes on Facebook, that Bill Clinton's Back To Work was necessary reading, so downloaded it to the Nook. Saturday I managed to wash fabrics for some orders, but that was the extent of my "work" for the day. I crashed big time.

I spent this morning in bed till noontime, sleeping. And then FINALLY dragged myself up and into the shower. This time when I went to the grocery store I felt about 1/3 of the way back to the land of the living...

I've got my surimi stir-fried rice recipe (with brown rice, thank you very much!) planned for dinner, and enough to fortify myself for the first of the week's meals, now, too...and when I came home this is what met me:

Four Blue Eyes staring at me from the windows (Look hard at the left one and you'll see Ms. Meeze...The Tonk's lighter coloring is easier to pick out)

Throughout the entire ordeal (btw, it's the sinus infection from hell), they have been constant companions. Either sleeping on the bed, in their beds in the den while I knit in my chair, or even in my lap. I think they were a bit miffed that I truly LEFT for a bit today...

Friday, January 06, 2012

Wrap Up of 2012

Well, I hadn't even thought about it, till Joce did hers, but yes, I did make a few knitted items last year. Here's the list:
2 Cowls
6 pairs of socks
10 hats
1 shawl
2 pairs of mitts/mittens
1 "baby layette" (blanket, socks, hat)
1 blanket

Nowhere near the number I usually do, I think, and it hasn't been for lack of wanting to knit, it's about the lack of time! Hmmm...

Since my One Word for 2012 is "ahimsa" one of the yamas of yoga, meaning, in essence "non-harming" just whom am I not harming by neglecting my need for fiber therapy?

Me. So as a result of my neglecting such things (as fiber, and sleep, and such) I'm down with a nasty sinus infection with fever)...

So one of the things I have to remember this 2012 is that hurting myself is the most automatic thing I do...doing too much, not learning to say "no" to protect my time and mental health. And of course, learning to do that in a nice way so I don't harm others, but they see I'm being wise and setting limits...

There's a lot more to ahimsa than this, but we've got a year to explore it...And a lifetime for me to get good at it...
Namaste.

Tuesday, January 03, 2012

Tis the New Year!

Because our Commonwealth gave it's workers the 2nd off in lieu of New Year's Day, my agency got it, too...so there were three family members easily available for the annual family holiday bash, including the most important one - the one at whose home we congregate! So yesterday was full of fun and festivity, some really good food, and gifting...I love everything that came my way, but I do have to admit I have a special place in my heart for the two gifts modeled here:

But then you know that Knitnana loves purple and participates in Red Hat Ladies Society, right? That flower with the rose button in the center of it was handcrafted by my dear sis-in-law (with whom I participate in the Red Hat Ladies activities, my partner in crime, as they say). The lovely scarf I'm wearing was also her creation, having benefited from a class in silk dyeing which she took at the TKGA convention this past September. I feel sooooooo pampered. (Yes, the scarf is in purple as well, tho' because it's silk, the shade is more muted, or so we think.) The flower, by the way, is happily attached to my red wool felt hat. IT's BEE-U-TI-FUL!

So I came home last night in a purple state of mind, and promptly decided to dig out of stash the Purple Royale worsted merino that Roxie dyed especially for me when she first got started. I'd originally thought I'd make a Clapotis from. Then I decided I'd rather not make a Clapotis in worsted...

And now I've changed my mind again...cast on this morning:

It's going to be gorgeous.

(Nope, I'm closer on my One Word, but still not quite there...I'm either narrowing it down, or getting distracted by the many perfectly decent words out there - oops! Just realized I wrote about that Over There on the other blog!)
*wink*

Sunday, January 01, 2012

It's NaKniMitMo2012!


And of course, since I want a pair of mittens between now and the end of January, I joined. Must get crackin'!!!

I can't think of a better way to start a new year than knitting a pair of color work mittens. Unless it's knitting a pair of colorwork mittens with hearts on them. Oh! That's what I'm doing!!!

Happy 2012!

Namaste

I honor the place in you,

which is of love, truth, light, and peace.

When you are centered in that place in you,

and I am centered in that place in me,

we are one.

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