Family History and Crafting

This will contain no crafting updates or lessons.  It has been only five months since Mom joined Dad and I am still processing my grief.  If you have any fresh grief or if you are particularly sensitive, you may want to skip this post.  Crafting updates will resume with the next post.

My memories of my Grandmother, Mom’s Mother, are of her smoking at the kitchen table, cooking dinner, eating pretzels while watching Wheel of Fortune, sitting on metal lawn chairs (not those woven ones with metal frames but heavy metal chairs I wish I had today) while listening to the Cleveland Indians on the radio and watching fireflies, and her crocheting.  She was always crocheting or sewing.  I have more memories of my Mom, but still, crocheting, plastic canvas, (she learned loom knitting because it was mentioned in the Knitting Retreat series by Betty Hechtman, a good series that I read because it got Mom interested in Loom Knitting), and always encouraging my desire to learn new techniques.  Mom never tired of telling me how proud her Mother would have been to see me learning all of the new (old/traditional) crafts.   Of course, I never got mom to try spinning, though I did trick her into learning needle tatting so she could help me teach a class on it; that was so much fun.  I came to realize just recently, how lucky I was to have crafting be a part of my memory as far back as I can remember, while I was working.

During a crafting triage session, where people can bring whatever they are working on for a bit more help, I had one patron show up.  She is a lovely middle aged woman who wanted to know why she couldn’t get the same results twice when using her knitting loom.  We determined that she needs to keep better records of what she is doing, and even out her tension.  However, during this session, while she was working from a couple of tangled skeins of yarn I came to realize that she did not know how to hand wind her yarn into a ball.  I’m not talking about using a notepinne to create a center pull ball, just a plain old ball of yarn.  The kind that tends to go bouncing all over the house if you are not careful.  By checking YouTube I see that they are all promoting how to wind a center pull ball as the only method, oh well.  We spent some time working on this new skill, and at the end she had three balls of white yarn and two more tangled skeins of blue to practice on.

What this really caused me to realize is how very lucky I am to have been raised by a Mom that was crafty.  Actually Dad used to make things with macrame and I remember him doing Rug Hooking for a time, so Dad was crafty as well.  I have Aunts, Dad’s sisters,  that Quilt, Sew, Knit, and Crochet so there is still a ton of Crafty influence and encouragement in my life.  You know how it goes, intellectually you understand how lucky you are to have the support and influences that you do, but until you are faced with someone that hasn’t had those advantages it doesn’t occur to you, Not everyone knows how to make a ball of yarn.  Those people that pull a length of yarn from the edge of a skein and cut it off really do not realize how much damage they are doing to the usability of the rest of the skein.

I miss mom, as spring begins to bloom and I realize that I do not need to traipse all over the back hills to pick every single daffodil that dares peek it’s head above ground, the ache becomes more apparent.  I am glad that is is with her parents and Dad, happy that she is no longer trapped by the ever growing limitations of her body, and pleased that she and Dad are looking down on the family.  Remembering the good times helps to ease the ache and deepen the sorrow all at the same time.

Okay, rant and reminiscing over.  There are more crafts to do, the weather is warming up, I should work on cutting down the weeds so I can create pretty flower beds out front.

Until next post, be happy for your support, remember your loved ones, and Live a Life A Little More Abstract.

Perils of a Closed Environment

At my public library job I am required to work one Saturday a month.  My community college has me working every Friday, unless there is a break, and my private Catholic university has me working every Sunday, unless they are on break.  That means that I worked for 13 days straight, though one Monday was just 5 hours instead of 11.5.  Since the Catholic university is on break this week, I do not have work on Sunday, and last Saturday was my Saturday so I have two days in a row off!

However, on Thursday a student worker called in sick to work.  Then today one of my colleagues texted to see how I am doing, apparently all 4 of the professionals at the community college library caught the same bug as our student worker. This is the perfect example of how sickness can spread through colleges like wildfire.  This college just has commuters, not even dorms, so this is spreading just through the classes that he attends, passing in the hallways, working in the library, eating in the cafe, etc.  We disinfect all the time, but most pathogens can be airborne so wiping everything down takes care of 80%, nothing is foolproof.

So instead of taking today to get a lot of chores as well as crafting done, I am taking Zinc, vitamin C, and fluids to try and keep this from taking me down further than my weekend off.  I was planning on going to church tomorrow, since mom got sick and died I’ve been pretty sporadic, but I do not want to give this to anyone.  I hope I’m better by Ash Wednesday, but no promises here.

I am aware that some people can just sit in bed working on their projects, coughing, and sipping on their beverages…this is not me.  I am trying to sweat this out, curled up in bed listening to old Knitpicks Podcasts.  When I get up for a fresh drink, something to eat, and feed the cat, I sit down and stitch a little on this or that, but I don’t want to have to rip anything out so I am not pushing it too hard.

Oh well, such is life.  Hope your weekend is better!

Happy Crafting!