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Archive for March 2nd, 2007

CityKidz Rock!

Friday, March 2nd, 2007

I am astonished by my knitters at Foster Community Center. Just Wednesday we received a box of excellent yarns from my cousin, Karen, in Texas. I had them all choose one special yarn for starters.

citykidzmitten0307.jpgThe girl in the middle of this photo? She took home some handpainted wool Wednesday. She came back to me Thursday with a mitten finished other than the final row at the top and the thumb. She then proceeded to finish the mitten. Twenty-four hours for one mitten, and *she did not use a pattern* at all, not even as a reference.

She has learned to be a “folk knitter” from me. She figures out an appropriate yarn for her project (or picks a yarn and then decides what kind of project it might be good for). She selects the right size needles for the yarn/project and about the right number of stitches for her needs. She uses her eyes and her good mind to figure out when to place (in this case) waste yarn for her thumb, and she figures out by logic when to start decreases for the top of the mitten.

She had not closed a tube with a “drawstring” method before, so I showed her that today, and we had some intense lessons in finishing yarn on the inside of a tube (she is a very fast learner). She would do it a little bit differently if she did it again but she had a mitten knit literally “off the cuff” in 24 hours. Dang. I am SO proud of “my kids.”

For the record, the other kids are not slouches either. The girl at left is knitting her first sock (with DK weight Encore wool/acrylic yarn, another donation) and really enjoying it. She has been with me about a year and a half if I remember right. I have never seen a child want to knit so much as this child. She sure is doing it well, now!

The little boy started knitting with me last week after we had a lot of boys all join me at once. He did come to me today saying his brother might stop knitting because he thinks boys don’t knit. I told this little one that his brother would be wrong… that he can of course say that he doesn’t want to knit or doesn’t like to knit, but that men and boys do in fact knit often.

I have a looseleaf notebook in my classroom for times like this. We got out my “men knit” book and looked at the men and photos of their work. I told him how my first knitting teacher was Mr. Johnson and how he finally became “the Principal over all the Principals” (Superintendent of Schools) and he is a man who knit. How one of the yarn shops in Lansing is owned by two men. How one of my best knitting friends is a man.

My boy was of course relieved to hear this, because he really does enjoy knitting. He finished his first wristband today, after three sessions with me. He is on the young side, in fact I think he is officially not quite old enough for the program but I chose not to send him away. He really loves knitting, he sees the magic in making something from “string” and “sticks.”

In this photo he is also showing four pompoms he made. Rae carries pompom makers and I bought some one day on a whim, thinking that some of the younger ones who struggle with fine motor skills might be able to make a pompom even if knitting was hard for them. It turns out that the kids who are working on longer projects like to make these as a little break from the monotony of the knit project. And what a fast way to finish something and take it home in your hand! Kids love that sort of project… don’t we all?

I’m Dancing Friday

Friday, March 2nd, 2007

I got a call asking me to sub for a friend, dancing at New Aladdin’s restaurant in Frandor (Lansing, Michigan) tomorrow/Friday. I jumped at the chance. I had been scheduled to dance in February but I was sick, so this feels great, only one month late.

There are shows at 6:30 and 8:00pm, for approximately a half hour each show. There is no cover, but I suggest you try dinner; or at least soup, a smoothie or their wonderful rice pudding.

I’d love to see a few of you there. The food is some of my favorite in Lansing, and the people there are such fine folks.

It is going to be a very good time! Come on, down!

This photo is about two years old… the debut of my dress that I bought in Egypt. I loved that show, the children were mesmerized by the sparkles on my dress. The girl in the pink followed me around the room, she loved the dancing and the dress so much. Since that day the girl and her mother have come to several Fabulous Heftones singing concerts, and the child loves to fall asleep at night to the music from our CD “Moon June Spoon.” She’s a sweet child and I’m honored to have her as a fan.