Tag Archives: grass

On knitting

BritGirlCatBoyDogknitI’m a terrible knitter. I’m dead slow. I regularly drop stitches  – in fact, so regularly, one could argue they could be part of the pattern, if they weren’t so varied in size.

I lose track of patterns, I forget where I am. I once knitted a hat that was shaped like a Mobius Strip and thus could never ever be worn. Or taken off the needles.

And god help me, with tremendous hubris, I made some poor soul an afghan for her wedding present – one with great holes and a distinct non-rectangularishness. Frightening. Warm, and it took me weeks and weeks to make, but…no.


my cat never plays with my yarn, so I can’t blame him for tangles…

If I were more patient, I’d learn how to fix dropped stitches, but I always lose the threads when I pull out a few to get at the missed one and so I end up pulling out the whole project and rolling it into a ball. One ball of yarn spent several months in the back of my closet, being punished for not behaving. I think there are a few half knit projects in there, too, all thinking about their respective badnesses.

So, I’ve got to ask myself, why in tarnation do I persist? How many simple scarves does one person need?

Well, there’s a few reasons I still tie bits of yarn in knots, and I think there’s something to be learned from them, so I thought I’d share them with you.

  1. Knitting is like meditation. The repetitive actions soothe the mind, allow it to play elsewhere. You are DOING something, ergo you are not wasting time, but you are also thinking, putting your subconscious chicks in a row.
  2. It keeps me humble. Everyone CAN knit. Not everyone can knit well. (and let’s not even mention….gasp…crochet!). Every time I start a project I am reminded of how little I know compared to so many others, about how much I have to learn.
  3. It’s a survival craft. Like baking bread or tying knots or sewing, it is one of thodress06se things that I (or rather, you) can do from first principles, from spinning the raw wool to making clothing. Come the armageddon, I shall at least be able to drape myself in large squares of knitted grasses. I find this vaguely comforting, tho god knows why.
  4. It’s a sensory delight. From the cheapest acrylic to the most dainty cashmere, wools and cottons and silks and bamboos slip through my fingers, providing sensory stimulation and the inevitable need to squeeze. My knitting pals pass skeins of yarn around our communal table and we ALL SQUEEZE EVERY SKEIN. It’s always  topic of comment, from the gritty linens to the softest baby yarn. And the colours!! Such fun to play with and imagine.
  5. And that brings up the best reason to keep knitting – my knitting pals. Knitting is a terrifically democratic hobby –  you can be a yarn snob (as I confess I am – I take so long to knit things I resent spending days on a cheap yarn) or a bargain hunter. You can insist on wool, or wander into the trendy yarns. You can be bad at it, as I am, or stupendous at it, like many of my pals, and you are welcome. No one is turned away. You knit and talk and knit little relationship groups together, form friends, link to new friends, develop a community just as you knit together your scarves or sweaters or socks. It’s amazing to watch and I treasure my knitting friends, who tolerate my descent into needle felting. (You can stab things and there’s no stitches to drop!

As with most important things, it’s the people that make the hobby. And the hobby that makes the friendships. Stories are shared over knitting that wouldn’t otherwise make it to air. I am so grateful for the friendships this seemingly simple task has brought into my life.

As for the rest of you, you non-knitting types, what’s stopping you? It keeps fingers nimble, it’s good for men, women and children. Come, join in. You’ll be welcome.



The natural connection


I’m hanging out at a cottage of my friend, listening to the early morning birdcall that drowns out the sound of ocean surf. It’s green and lush here, filled with happy sounds of squirrels running overhead, sweet flollipy bunnies galumphing in the yard, tiny birds chipping and chirping while crows caw overhead.

And behind, the breathing ocean, in out, in out, with the occasional sigh of a large wave crashing.
It’s soothing and grounding, this close contact with nature, the touch of sand on your feet, the whisper of water over your toes.

The water here in PEI is unnaturally warm. Last night when I dipped my toes in, they didn’t shriek with pain as they normally do. It seemed odd, combined with my childhood memories of a time where people swimming would turn a pale shade of blue. Pointed out that the world is indeed changing.

But still the birds sing, the grass grows, twitterpated squirrels chase one another through the trees. You can’t help but think, somehow, it’s all right in the world here…on this “gentle island”.

Time to go walk barefoot through the grass…