Breathe in. Breathe Out.
As I mentioned in my last post Still Knitting in the Apocalypse the quest for peace at this moment is taking extra and very intentional effort. Walking the line between actively dealing with issues rather than just checking out and taking a break to breathe and regroup is not an easy balance to find.
Usually, knitting is one of my main go-to’s for finding a place of calm. The normal rhythm of the needles is a very calming practice on par with meditation for me. In fact, something that holds a bit of a challenge can be very helpful since it requires extra focus. However, that has not been the case this time. The concerns and anxieties I am wrestling with will not be ignored and only distract me from the attention needed for a challenging project. That being said, I still find it helpful to be creating and crafting for the sake of those necessary moments to just breathe. So, in this case, I have picked up again the Granny Squares I had begun a few weeks ago. I can do those almost mindlessly and my pile of squares has been growing. I’m allowing myself to get lost in the creation of this blanket and letting the warm thoughts of love, as I think of the person who will be receiving it, wash over me, calm me and heal me.
In the same vein, I have also started giving extra time to a Granny Stripe Blanket I began months ago. This will also be a gift. (the Granny theme is purely coincidental) I began this project to have something to work on during the days I provide child care. I’m less concerned about going back on a fairly simple crochet pattern and repairing the damage done by a sweet but wily grandson than I would be for a knitting project that would be a far greater challenge to restore.
In the beginning, it was a “whenever I have time” project (when you are watching a 3-year-old you find there isn’t much time to crochet) and not a focused one. But this is also one I can do in an automatic way and think about the person who will receive this gift. The bed it will go across is very large so, there will some time and yarn invested in this one, but it still gives me happy feels as I think of them while I work and again, reminds me of the good and the wonderful at a time when those things are harder to see.
On the theme of blankets, I have another project that I will need to start soon. Another baby will be welcomed to our extended family this September and, of course, I want to make something for them. The father is very much a naturalist. He is an expert at finding and foraging edible plants in the wild. He has made meals almost entirely from plants he has found and knows what seasons to collect certain things to use and save. His middle name is literally “Forrest” (no joke).
I had originally considered making a double knit blanket with a leaf or tree motif. Such as the one pictured here. But knowing the time that a double knit project takes, the deadline, and the busy-ness of my life, I decided to go with sewing a baby quilt instead. Since I quilt by machine rather than by hand, once I have the materials together, it should go fairly quickly. So I went fabric shopping, Unlike some of my friends, I don’t really love shopping, but fabric, yarn, plants, or books. Well, that’s different.
For this trip, I was looking for the main, theme fabric. Considering this family, the fabric I settled on seemed spot on.
I need to go back and find suitable coordinating fabrics to complete this project, but I am really happy with this print. I have made quilts before, but not often, and I decided to go with something simple to make it easy on myself. So I settled in this Modern Stripe pattern. I’m eager to get the rest of the fabric and get started on it. It’s been a long time since I dusted off my sewing machine so this will be fun.
So, just at the Summer Solstice (and in the brutal heat and humidity of Southern Indiana), I’ve got 3 blankets going. I have no explanation for this.
My new chicks are growing well and it won’t be long until I integrate them in with the big girls. In order to allow them to get used to each other before just throwing them in together, I have sectioned off a shaded portion of the outside foraging pen. In this way, the chicks can acclimate to outside life after spending all this time in “ideal” conditions. If I put down any grain for them outside, I make sure that they are eating right next to each other. I don’t think it will be long before they are one, big happy family. Whether they like it or no.
I recently decided to begin growing my own ginger. I love using ginger in my cooking and making ginger tea. So a few weeks ago I bought some organic ginger root at my local Co-op, divided them into 6 sections and put them in containers on my back porch. I can now see promise emerging.
My final thoughts this week are to share with you a favorite music video of mine. I have watched it multiple times in the last week. It reminds me that even when it seems there is little hope, if we look for it, we find there is more than we realize.