Knit with meaning

Hi Knit Friends,

I thought I would feel differently by now, but grief is a damn bitch. I am extremely grateful for my LYS. Accepting my strangeness and allowing me just to soak up the knit atmosphere. Laughs were hard to come by in the early days, but in my recent trip I started opening up. Opening up to me means laughing and BSing with my regular friends. Occasionally my thoughts drift to my uncle, but he wouldn’t want me to stay I unhappy for long. In addition to my curious dog Eddie. He can snatch a skein in under 3 seconds. He keeps my company when I knit so I guess I can overlook the occasional skein thief.

K N I T T I N G update

I started working on 2 new projects that are giving me joy. A hat called Check This Out! Hat and a pair of socks for a friend (not pictured).

I’m in a dilemma with knitting a gift for my aunt. She chose the pattern and I already can’t stand it. Part of me is fighting it with its 210+ cast-on. I should have known it wasn’t going to be easy. I love that at least the yarn is yummy Malabrigo Rios, but I have to ripe it out because it was a Mobius cast-on by accident. Both are textured, but one grow outwardly (Alicia Plummer’s MidAutumn) and the other is built in the round (photo by Tricotbec- Brookstone). I don’t have time to play around as her birthday is the first week of February.

 

In another topic: Work update

I am please to announce I’ll be starting a new job at a local university. It only took me five years to aquire a job in the same state I reside. It will be a positive shift where I can really take care of my home and make it more welcoming. I slowing telling a couple of people I work with case I don’t want a big fuss. The funny thing is that my old director is organizing a Luncheon for my departure from the city. I love the people at my old job, but loss motivation. It took me a good year to start looking. As a fellow knitter should remind myself that if the pattern isn’t meshing then it time to get a new project. What’s on your needles, friends?

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2017 Intentions

Good morning Knit Friends,

I do not feel like my normal chippery self, but life must go on. I lived most of 2016 with intention. I define intention as action behind words. An example of intention in 2016 is that I went to a library conference and managed to present in two different segments. My confidence in research and having a professional presence both were achieved. I even managed to utilized Twitter at the conference and while watching Super Soul Sunday. That was the biggest surprise when I saw that I was re-twitted. 

In 2016, I honored my intention my making a cabled hat. It was scary, but I made it through. It had a good home for a knit friend.

In 2017, I have more knit plans:

  1. Finish 4 WIPs. One sock, two shawls, one hat, 
  2. Schedule 2 knit sessions for cabling
  3. Start first sweater by Nora Gaughan called Mohr 
  4. Make 3 socks for me

    In non-knitting goals:

    1. Complete book chapter by providing research and analysis
    2. Complete research for local symposium conference
    3. Attend a library conference in August
    4. Attend a professional football and college basketball game
    5. Have fun even if things don’t turn out the way I want it to.
    6. Read 10 books, most are non fiction (the list is at work)

      Lastly allow myself to grieve through writing and talking with friends. Listen to music more and allow for silence whenever things become too much. My uncle was like Mr. Miyagi from Karate Kid. He always asked a question when I’d ask him something as a little kid. I can almost hear his voice saying “Do not give up Grasshopper, I’m with you always”. 

      Goodbye Grief

      goodbye-grief

      It’s with shock I share these words to no one in particular. It’s probably something that I would share with my uncle. I met my uncle when I was only eight years old. He was a big guy, over six feet tall. He was one of the most important people in my life. We talked at least three times a week. From football, politics, higher education- he was always there for me. When he married my aunt twenty years ago, he also treated me like a daughter. The last five years were the best because I felt like he made an effort to get to know me as an adult. Sometimes I think its hard for parents to ever see their children as anything else. My uncle did. He was consistent, honest, intelligent, and loved unconditionally. He was very compassionate and never let his heart harden despite how the world treated him. He always had a story and lived life as if it were his last day. His optimism and hope will forever be remembered. I don’t know if I’ll ever meet anyone else like him. He loved me as his own and the world will never be the same. Rest peacefully Uncle T.

      Self-care equals #knitting

      Hello Knit Friends,

      I have been working really hard to figure out if I should expend my energy on responding to the results of the recent U.S. election. My feelings about it aren’t even important at this point because I grew up in bible-belt Georgia. The acts of bigotry and disregard for people who are different was common place. The fact that Trump’s hate filled speech catapulted him to the presidency. I have learned the hard way that the America that I grew up in is the same America that showed itself after election day. I am disappointed that the American Dream was never meant for me because of the color of my skin, my agnostic beliefs, and my queer lifestyle.  The only jolt of surprise is the lack of participation from so-called Americans. No one really could predict that the third party interests and Christian fundamentalist women voters would tip the scale for Trump to become President.

      my-activism

      Below are several resources that I have started reviewing today to wrap my head around the reality that Trump will soon represent America. I understand the anger, fears, and anxiety that my fellow POCs feel because of the reality of what Trump’s presidency represents. I am thankful that I choose to use social media to stay connected to the marginalized voices that are often lost in mainstream media. A special thanks to my library friends for finding amazing resources. I’ve tried to be inclusive with the resources that I share so that allies and others who now realize that their neutrality is harmful.

      Helpful article about how to ‘hold space’ for others who are dealing with difficult situations such as the emotional trauma of losing someone or even showing up to listen to people who upset about the U.S. election.

      hold-space

      9 Activist share stories of how they are reacting to the Trump Presidency

      trumps-america

      Music is a huge tool for bringing people together through challenging times. I use Spotify to help find some music to escape – Also Alicia Key’s new album Here is out. I find myself revisiting Tracy Chapman music too.

      Kareem Abdul-Jabbar’s commentary on What it means to be Black in a Trump Administration

      toni-morrison

      For the intellectuals who likes to debate or read (like me) what a community of scholars have put together called the Trump Syllabus 2.0 – created by N. D. B. Connolly and Keisha N. Blain. It was created in June 2016 as the popularity of Trump began to grow. It is an objective reflection from all sides that include textbooks and commentary (below is a short summary)

      trump-syllabus-2-0

      I am a firm believer that there will always be work to do. Many of us have different parts to play. We also have freewill to exercise our choices in how we show up. Do we choose to standup and do something for those who are oppressed, hurt, and emotionally devastated? I choose to offer alternatives to help my community cope with the difficult road ahead. As we all watch the destruction of laws and government fight against the democracy of its people. I will try to remain hopeful in my belief in the resiliency of humanity. I will dive deep into my knitting or contribute to holding space for those who often feel alone and invisible. You are not alone knit friends- I see you and you matter.

       

      Sometimes chickens knit

      Hi Knit Friends,

      I know it must be an amazing time if I’m already writing another post so soon. I am excited and glowing because I just had a 3 hour gab fest (aka. Gossip session) with an old school mate. Even though we work in the same city, our schedules are so busy we have a hard time meeting. I laughed so hard between taking bites of delicious Peruvian chicken. It’s always nice to catch up because my Southern accent comes out. 

      I enjoyed the butternut squash casserole with lovely rice. The chicken was Lemon herb. My friend had a chicken sandwich with a salad. I’m sure I’m the pickiest eater so I chose Nandos in Chinatown. My safe eating place.

      My friend doesn’t know anything about knitting, but I told her she needs a new hobby. She laughed. I probably can get her to read the book (above) I found today while looking at IG. I found the author’s page after much warranted freak out fest. I don’t know why I get so goofy over colorwork. I almost want to search for a Swedish penpal just to get my hands on this book. If the author needs an American Ambassador, I’d gladly sign up. Payment in sock yarn is a fair trade 😎

      My meet up with my classmate was such fun. We talked about family and work projects. It’s so refreshing to meet people back home as I’m often reminded that manners and genuine niceties are rare in D.C. Each time we hang out we always talk about new books and articles that we’ve read. Halfway through our meeting, I’m pulling out paper to jot down notes because I certainly don’t want to miss a thing. She might have me going to another unplanned conference trip back home as a reunion. I’m filled with gratitude with my friendships. This one in particular is very heartful.

      As a self prescribed ambassador, I told her that she should read Awesomely Luvvie’s I’m Judging You.

      She mentioned a book called Originals by Adam Grant. I’ll be sending her an email soon about some of my other favorites. Knit friends, what good books have you read? Do you like audiobooks? 

      Thoughtful Knit Thursday

      Hi Knit Friends,

      Again I find myself at Thursday and feeling tired. Last week was the same thing filled with navigating work/life balance. I am thankful that I’ve found a new project to calm myself. I may have mentioned a new adventure with writing for publishing. It scares the hell out of me that someone would be interested in my writing. It’s not a hard topic something that I enjoy, but it’s the story telling portion that has me nervous. I value my private life and this writing assignment will challenge me to reveal things that can certainly help others. I turned in my draft last week and received the feedback today. I can’t believe I was so nervous. I guess it goes to show that I need to be more gentle with myself. My new sock project called Patio sock is helping work out my anxieties. I’m using stashed yarn by Dragonfly Fibers and the name escapes me. 

       It has equal parts blue and purple. The pattern repeats are very easy. I am also trying Addi Flip Stix. They are very sturdy and work well with the yarn- not too slippery.

      I enjoy reading and listening to words of encouragement. I try to watch Oprah’s #SupersoulSunday shows because they are informative. My reading list has grown so much. One quote from author of Love Warrior (Glennon Doyle Melton) 

      I absolutely love this quote because it is confirmation for me that I will be okay. I’ve felt like as a kid there weren’t a lot of messages around to reassure me that life would become bareable. I still have small residual effects of trauma. Knitting helps to sooth those feelings of helplessness and isolation. When I get lost in a new project I feel better. My focus is sharp and the final project is the evidence that I didn’t give up. Just like in life sometimes our circumstances can be one thing, but our optimism and hard work can lead us to resiliency. I am thankful that I no longer rest in stagnation as a safety net. I can rely on books, knitting, and friends to encourage and love me. Friends, what does knitting do for you? Have you used knitting to cope with hard life circumstances? Below is another nice quote I found on IG and the author is unknown (unless someone can find the owner). 

      Another exciting project I hope to start this weekend is from my favorite designer/knitter Hunter Hammersen. It’s called Excursion with a discount code until tomorrow. Sorry about the late announcement. I have 2 friends who want to do this. It will be my second cabled project.