No finished projects or places to post about. I could take a picture of any room in the house to show you the upside down and inside out state it's in but that would just depress me. So what does one do when you've nothing to write about and your last post was five days ago? Delve into the past.
I recently celebrated my fifth knitting anniversary! It feels like I've been knitting much longer than that. I don't remember why I wanted to learn to knit - probably a blog that I read - but I remember buying one of those seven dollar "Learn to Knit in a Day!" books from JoAnn Fabric, some cheap yarn (some itchy blue TLC yarn if I remember correctly), and, I think, some metal needles. All of it was put aside in frustration pretty quickly. Eventually the mother of a friend even tried to showed me how to knit but I just couldn't get the hang of it.
Determined to learn, I asked for Debbie Stoller's Stitch 'N Bitch for Christmas.
And I learned to knit!
I then bought two skeins of Homespun (the last two skeins of Homespun I ever bought) and some giant pink size 15 needles and knitted my first scarf in Pepto Pink and Blackish-Gray - the Go-Go Garter Scarf from Stitch 'N Bitch. One end is wider than the other due to many, many picked up stitches but I wore it (a few times), loved it and, of course, still have it.
I soon joined a Yahoo Meetup group for Columbus knitters and met up with one of the members. I remember that it felt really awkward - meeting a stranger you have potentially one thing in common with. The cafe downtown where we were going to meet was actually closed but she waved me down from the sidewalk, thinking I looked like a knitter, and, since she had ridden the bus, I drove us to a Caribou Coffee. She was twice my age and I can't remember what we talked about but she helped me out when I dropped a stitch on my second scarf, Ribbed for Her Pleasure. Later on she mentioned the meet up on her blog and that's when I received my first knitting compliment. I gave good gauge.
I met up with her and a bunch of other knitters another time at a cafe a few blocks from my apartment but I only met up with them once. Living in Columbus was a strange time for me. It wasn't exactly a friendly city to begin with and, even though a knit group is a great opportunity to meet friendly people, I can be kind of shy. Plus the parking stunk and I hated to go anywhere if there was a chance I would have to struggle to find a place to park in an area I wasn't familiar with. Freakish, I know. That strange antisocial part of me still has a fear of calling people - I can answer the phone with no problem (thankfully, my nine year receptionist job was more about answering the phone than making calls) but I get a little nauseous when I have to call someone, especially a stranger. Anyway, I digress. About the only thing I remember from that night was that a girl there was knitting an ENORMOUS bag. That was when I first heard of felting.
It was nothing but scarves for a long time. Eventually, though, I knitted the Chinese Charm Bag, again from Stitch 'N Bitch. Of course, all of this was knitted with the limited supply of yarn you could find at JoAnn's. It wasn't until I took a vacay to Sanibel Island, Florida that I first ventured into a knitting shop (this one, I think). I had no idea what I was doing and ended up with a very small, very expensive ball of novelty yarn that eventually used in two projects that I never ever wore (a head band an a wrist band).
It wasn't until I moved back to Dayton that I really learned what yarn was all about and, strangely, I bought my first skein of useful yarn online. I had no idea that there was a yarn shop - albeit not one of my favorites - right down the street from my office. That yarn, Noro Kureyon, became one Kolenya Fingerless Glove and gave me my first taste of Second Anything Syndrome.
Ravelry changed everything for me like I'm sure it has for a countless number of knitters. There I not only found a wealth of patterns and ideas and the ability to try new things, I, most importantly, found friends. Some I already knew but got to keep in touch with in a different way - Delly, Miss V and Bertha (I first heard of Ravelry through her blog). And one particular new friend - a fellow Alan Rickman fan. And then there were the real life friends - a maid of honor, a photographer and a small group of people who met every Sunday night for coffee and knitting. I loved the silliness, support and camaraderie of the group and the drive home chats with Ginny and the way my yarn would smell like coffee when I brought it out at home later that night or the next day.
Now I knit nearly every day and am making more new friends via Ravelry and another Sunday knit group here in Salisbury. For all this I think I'm very lucky to know what to do with two sticks and a ball of yarn.