Knitting and Zen

Sometimes I knit things and think, is this going to work? Is it really? Sometimes I need to trust the pattern, that things will all be fine.

Sometimes, however, I need to trust myself and know that when something looks too small? It’s really too small. I mean, I am not a large person, but I am still an adult.

Sweater Body

See that sweater? That is not a sweater that is going to fit an adult, and no talk of negative ease is going to change that. Sadly, it took me all the way up to the armholes to realize it.

At which point I also realized that if I was going to adjust, I was also going to need to get more yarn.

Which led me to reflect on the fact that I was on the fence about using this yarn, and was thinking that something with a little more depth would make a nicer sweater.

Which led me to decide that ripping it back is the best option.

Sunlight Shawl

Now the yarn is destined to become a nice shawl (or at least half of it is) which I hope will be a cheerful addition to my wardrobe.

In the meantime, I’m trying not to think about the weeks of progress lost and take a zen approach. Things are created. Things are destroyed. So it goes.

It just better be a really nice shawl.

Journey into the Tarot: The Magician

Onward we continue, through the major arcana and the journey of our intrepid hero. (Yes, I know, technically I should be calling myself a heroine, but I reject your gendered paradigm and substitute my own.)

Magician 1.2

Once off on a journey, the hero of this story must learn that she possesses the power to create her own reality. The tools are there, but one must have the will to use them and the knowledge that they can are capable. After all, it’s belief in one’s ability that is often the most difficult part of anything.

Magician 2.3

Once again, this card showed up at a pretty relevant time in my life. I’m female, so I’ve been socialized to wait for permission a lot. Between my gender and my family’s tendencies to prefer invisibility to making waves, I’ve spent a lot of time frustrated that I wasn’t getting ahead. Only it’s been made clear that what is holding me back is the will. I have the tools, I have the ability, and now it’s up to me to make something with them.  It’s not going to be an easy road, but the will is the first step.

Magician 3.2

When the Magician shows up for you, ask yourself what you want to achieve? What do you feel is missing? Whatever it is, you have the ability to make it manifest in your life. The tools are there, and the skill is available.  It’s up to you to channel the will and begin the work to bring it into being.

Magician 4.1

Lammas Progress

I hate to be a boring blogger, but sweaters in progress really are not all that exciting. I am still knitting on the Lammas sweater, which is slowly growing. It is not very exciting to look at, and still appears terrifyingly small.

Lammas Progress

I’m pretty sure it will actually fit when it’s all said and done. If not me, then someone. Preferably me, however, because I really need a sweater this color. At least I’m nearing the end of the body and I will be able to stop counting rows for a while.

Fall Cleaning

Okay, this is one of those posts that’s going to be a little embarrassing. Maybe a lot embarrassing. I’ve been feeling the urge to go through and purge things lately, and I finally decided to tackle my clothes.

I might have a small problem with clothes. I actually don’t like shopping, but I’ve been the same size since I was around 15, and between gradual accumulation and clothing swaps, I’ve gotten entirely too many things. A lot of which no longer suit me, but I held onto because they fit. Only I found myself feeling overwhelmed by my options, and yet hating most of the things I had.

This is what my closet looked like before. (I didn’t photograph the dressers.)

Before Closet

I’ll admit that this is just a first-level sort. I didn’t make especially tough choices, and there were some things, like sundresses, that I haven’t touched at all because we’re still using them for the tarot project and I may need some for costumes. So those just got moved to the other side with the (also unsorted) ballgowns.

That said, I wound up with about 10 grocery bags of clothes to get rid of, and cut my skirts down by 1/3 and my dresses down by at least half. I suspect there’s still quite a bit of curation to be done, in terms of making tough choices and carefully bringing in new pieces that fit my style, but it looks a lot better now.

After Closet

Hopefully it will make getting ready less of a chore and I will settle on some sort of personal style that works for me!

This entry was posted in Life.

Almost a Sweater

The baby squirrel sweater is starting to almost look like a sweater. It’s a sweater body at least, even if it’s missing arms and a button band. And buttons. The latter two of which are my least favorite parts of sweater knitting. Picking out buttons is shockingly difficult.

Squirrel Body

It’s a good thing that I’m so close, too, because the baby in question was born a few days early! So I’m even more behind than I thought. I’m sure his parents are too sleep-deprived to notice, but it is good motivation to get this sweater finished and sent off in time to be worn.

Journey Into the Tarot: The Fool

The Majors have arrived! Amen and hallelujah! A mere 22 cards left in this crazy experiment of mine. The Majors are, of course, the biggest journey of the tarot. If the suits are experiences through certain themes, then majors are the big themes of life.

The Fool 1.1

We begin this journey quite literally, with The Fool. Traditionally pictured as a young man, accompanied by a dog, carrying his belongings on a stick, the Fool is often seen about to step off a cliff, seemingly unaware of the plunge before him.

The Fool 2.3

Given my not-insubstantial fear of heights, I made it quite clear to Nancy that we were not going to be using any cliffs in this photoshoot, at any point. Instead, we decided to use trains and took a day trip to Sacramento and the railroad museum to work on this. It was great fun, and the museum staff were quite tickled by my period outfit — I think three tried to recruit me as a volunteer.

The Fool 3.1

Not surprisingly, as we got back into the swing of things, the Fool made itself known in my life. I had felt on the cusp of something I wanted very much, only to find it wasn’t going to happen. I found myself reaching a point of now what – to want things in that same direction hurt too much. So much like the Fool, I felt myself wandering without any real direction. Ready to go somewhere – but not sure where. I’m still not sure, but it’s time to start walking even if I’m not sure of the way.

The Fool 4.1

When The Fool comes up in a reading, it’s time to look at where you’re headed. What new things can you be working towards? Sometimes these may be journeys that are clear — a new job, a new school, the start of a new relationship. Other times, they may not be. You may find this cards turns up when you’re feeling stuck, unmotivated, hopeless. In those times, it’s a sign to start moving. Every journey starts with a single step – so take yours.

The Fool 5.2

FO Friday: Swan Socks

It’s another pair of CAYA socks done and off the needles! These are for the lovely Maia Mermaid, and I knew I had found the perfect pattern. A priestess of Aphrodite and a devotee of the Freya, these viking swans were clearly the socks for Maia. I also knew I needed a lovely pink yarn.

Swan Socks

The yarn used in these is Madeline Tosh Sock in Sunrose and Calligraphy. It was a dream to knit with and came out so beautifully. The pattern is Valkyries by Karen S. Laugher and can be purchased on Ravelry.

I'm a Swan

Overall I’m pleased with how these turned out but I admit — they took a long time. The pattern is gorgeous but was a hard one to get into a groove with, but it was totally worth all the effort to have these done and present them to Maia!

View from the Trees

Remember that I promised video from my zipline adventure? Well, I finally got around to cutting the footage together.

Be warned: It’s pretty raw, I had a hard time maneuvering the camera so my arm is in most of the shots, and I didn’t do much of a job at editing it either; I just wanted to get it up.

Hope you enjoyed that view from the trees!

This entry was posted in Life.