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Archive for December 31st, 2007

My Best, 2007

Monday, December 31st, 2007

turkishlegwarmersblog.jpgOur beloved Stephanie Pearl-McPhee (Yarn Harlot) is asking her readers a question. What is the best thing you made this year? My answer actually is the answer to two questions, one she did not ask but it’s related.

The best thing I did in 2007 was teach for Dallas-Fort Worth Fiber Fest, back in April. The best, bar none.

So the best thing I knit? I had to make a project for the fashion show, for that festival. And I made thigh-high legwarmers in 13 colors of DK-weight yarn. Four turquoise, four magenta/hot pink, three hot green, one yellow, one purple. They were inspired by the colorwork of Turkish Socknitting, though they are modern in design.

Maybe you will want to go over to Stephanie’s blog and share yours, as well?

Feeling Un-Stuck Today

Monday, December 31st, 2007

treebigwithdot.jpgBrian reminds me often (when I’m going on about how impossible it is to get control over my environment) that the house contains a finite number of objects. If we really wanted to, we could inventory and/or count every item in the house.

Today that information helped me get started. I had a real mess in the yarn storage area, which happens to be half of our living room. I did not want that sort of mess in a space I look at every day. Finally tonight I got enough energy together to start tackling it.

He is right, there are only so many items in the house. And since this is merely one room, and actually only about half of that room, no matter how many things live in all the boxes and on all of the shelves, I could eventually deal with things.

What started the decline was overstuffing of shelves with balls of yarn. They would overstuff and then a group of balls would dive off the shelf at the same time. Those balls would leave streamers of yarn ends going up tot the shelf. On the way down, of course, they would exercise the perfect swan dive and braid themselves.

I’d come into the room having missed the diving performance, and I’d have a pile of yarn balls on the floor in a crazed mess of a tangle, with strands five feet long. You would swear they had been doing a little woolly mating dance while you were looking the other way. Nightmare!

Then if I didn’t notice, and other balls did their dive from a different shelf? The weaving going on by sheer gravity was truly astonishing. And the more this happened, the more impossible it seemed that I would ever get them untangled.

Thank goodness I’m very good at un-tangling yarn when I’m not in a hurry. I started in on the shelves about a month ago. I gave in and purchased clear plastic bins to contain the yarn and keep them from diving. One cubbyhole at a time, I would untangle and rectify that particular mess.

I prefer the look of yarn on a shelf over the look of a clear bin with yarn in it on the same shelf. However, I prefer nearly anything to a woven mess rivaling the work of Arachne, where I can’t get one ball of yarn without a long untangling process.

So tonight I got through most of the boxes and got the last bit of yarn off the floor. I re-evaluated my works in progress (WIPs) and unfinished objects (UFOs). Some of those UFOs will become yarn again, because they were not working out properly. Some are back in the pending process and have gone back to WIPs.

And now I have a small box of socks that I have never photographed and therefore never worn. I found three pair of Afterthought Heel socks that just need heels, including one pair for Brian. Cool! Maybe I can finish a pair for him before the end of the year. Heels do not take that long.

My office remains a mess. My kitchen, which has two areas, has been much more manageable in the last month and I have been enjoying that. My living area of the Living Room does not have much in it, so unless I have a pile of magazines and knitting projects next to the couch (my favorite lounging spot) it’s pretty easy to keep on the tidy side.

But the office? Ugh. Here, too, there is a finite number of objects. However, paper and receipts take up a lot less space than yarn. That means more things in a smaller area. But if I could transform the yarn area from inaccessible to useable (not pretty yet but much closer) in about 4 hours? Then I can also transform the office area. Probably not in 4 hours, but I could make a lovely dent with an hour or two.

The photo today does not have anything to do with the post… it is a photo I took on Christmas day when we took a walk a few blocks from our home. This beautiful old tree has a blue dot on it, which probably means that the city is going to cut it down (there are a lot of dead-looking branches on it, though it’s hard to see what is up in the wintertime). I felt compelled to take a photo. The tree is so beautiful!

I’ve heard other phrases that help follks get unstuck. One is “Done is better than perfect… thanks to Rita from Yarn Hollow/Grand Rapids for that input. Do any of you have sayings that help you keep going when things need attention and nothing seems “perfect” to help the task get done?