Friday, January 27, 2012

Better and Better: One resolution DONE!

I am sock-cessful!

I've spent much of the week fighting off a cold and feel much better now!  Zinc and plenty of rest seem to have knocked this out sooner than usual.  All that rest afforded me the opportunity to lay on the couch and knit, so the result thus far is this:

Definitely needs blocking, but it fits!!

It's not been blocked or washed yet, but it's a real sock!  I've unfortunately knitted ladders into it at the needle margins and need to figure out how to not make that happen on its mate or future socks.  The worst of the ladders ended up on the underside where it won't show.  I am so delighted to have made a real sock!  They work up so very quickly, the light yarn is pleasant to work, and I can't wait to finish the mate and start on another pair.

Another blogger I read and respect had an interesting and astute definition for crafts:  "Time consuming activity where the output is less than the input."  It's a near-perfect summary of my take on crafts as well and explains as well as anything why I don't make scrapbooks (I also get cranky when we use nouns as verbs, so in my world we create scrapbooks rather than scrapbooking, except for that we don't) or any of the other popular crafts.  I do love handwork, though, as long as the product is something I can wear or use, or give to someone to wear or use.  In my mind, that's more along the lines of an artistic creation; the output is far more than the input, and one has something made by one's own hands that is as good or usually better than factory-produced goods.

My pictures, though, remain in neatly ordered boxes by year, and there they shall always remain.  I've often been a bit mystified by women who take up making scrapbooks and quickly become overwhelmed and even guilty -- how many times have you heard, "I'm so behind on my scrapbooking!"  How does one get ahead, or keep up?  Most disturbing of all are mothers who create scrapbooking moments:  requiring their children to dress in a certain way and pose for photos that will appear as a theme in the scrapbooks.  We were at a park a few months ago with children playing as usual, except for one mother and her children; they arrived, she had them pose as if playing on various play equipment but screeched if they touched the dirt, and then they filed back into their minivan, photos accomplished.  Is that really a memory?

I'll eat my words eventually here, since I have a keepsake scrapbook-y album from my grandmother that is falling apart and needs to be redone.  I have a new album and paper that won't disintegrate, and I need to carefully remove her cards and keepsakes and put them gently into a new space.  This was the last thing my very dear grandmother passed along to me before she died a few years ago, and I need to take good care of it.  There are no photos, no twee captions, no stickers or die-cuts -- just cards and notes from well-wishers and heartbreaking condolences from when she lost a baby.  She passed this along to me after we had the same experience, and it connected us even more.  For that, I'll be respectfully, lovingly renovating this priceless treasure she entrusted to me.

Beyond that, I'll be continuing to spread my photos out on a table to look at them, and will otherwise continue the useful pursuit of knitting to satisfy my need for handwork.  I'm getting better and better at socks!
I love the stripes!


  1. LOVE your socks!! Just wonderful! There's nothing better than homemade socks! :)

  2. Oh, thank you, Carla! They have turned out to be just as warm and cozy as I was hoping-- and much easier to make than I thought. I'm a confirmed sock knitter now!