Friday, November 21

seven things, not six and not eight, just seven ...

thing one:
late last night Our #2 turned up and on sunday my folks appear too! tis less than a week to Thanksgiving and it is truly beginning to feel like the holidays. it has been 2 years since my folks came to stay, we are all quite giddy waiting their arrival and i have promised them they will not have to stand for a whole 2 weeks and that there will be chairs and a bed for them to rest their weary bods.

thing two:
i will be participating in the 2nd Makers Market this december 6th from 9 to 6 at Tolt Yarn and Wool. my little stall will be a medley of vintage and handmade with a sprinkling of 'one offs' from my studio. if perchance you would like to pottle on by to see me, i would like that so muchly 

thing three:
alas and alack, the last of our chickie peas, Little Voice, was taken from us this past weekend.

 it has been 6 years since those funny little feathered friends came to live with us, the very reason for us moving to Mossy Shed. 6 years of every evening some bod shouting through the shed "has someone popped the chickens away?" and 6 years of me standing at the kitchen sink each morn watching them pace up and down ready to be let free to roam another day. my man said upon discovery of Little Voice having gone to the great las vegas in the sky, albeit not looking her finest, "we may be planning our future but we must still live in the present, therefore i vote we find ourselves some chicks next spring" i have no idea where that profound wisdom came from, but i liked it, i liked it a whole lot and in turn this made me like him too.

thing four:
i have finished up my 'woolly tattoo'-ed sweater but cannot don it for the cold dip has gone away and now we are positively tropical in temps with a bit of damp. i fear if i put on my turtle neck wool sweater i may just have a bit of a panic and overheat, thus it will have to just wait looking splendid upon a hanger till such time the temps dip again

thing five;
the new issue of PomPom Quarterly appeared at work yesterday, i had not planned to go in but a need to change a few displays was required so off i trotted. where upon i saw a copy and flicked to just one page which happened to have mittens upon it, not just any old mittens but crocheted mittens, the likes of which i have never seen before. be still my beating mitten loving heart. i was smitten, i needed to make those mittens. all plans to make Our #3 a knitted beanie to keep his nuggin warm this scottish winter went out the window. all plans to figure out a crochet version of the 1930's cowl went out the door. all plans to make a granny neckerchief to share on this here shiny space went out the cat flap. for all i have eyes for is this peachy pair

thing six:
i did not know when i wrote about the book i read this past week how many dearies it would resonant with, i felt i was not putting things into words correctly, that it was swimming all jumbly and bumbly inside of my head, mixed up with so many emotions and i could not let it come out clearly but i need not have fretted for it would appear the gist of it was understood. it is an emotional and physically draining process when you start to sort through mementos from years gone by. 
i am tres happy to think when i read the comments on facebook that perhaps this little book will help others join me in treading not so fearfully 'the path of letting go'.

thing seven:
dearest readers, happy happy weekend to you, may it be filled with love, light, learning and lots of joy

Wednesday, November 19

tidying up ...

i have just finished up a book with a cat on my lap in bed at 10am this morn, this is highly risque of me and not my usual morning routine. however when i rolled out of bed this morn at 6:30 to get Our #4 to school i noted upon my return (in pj's still) that is was my only morning in the longest time when i did not have to be out and about somewhere. 
so i took my book and a passing cat back to bed.

the book i am reading is called 'the life-changing magic of tidying up' by marie kondo and you can find it online if you go searching. it found me in an odd roundabout way which makes me once again wonder about how the timing of these things comes to be.

i have read it from cover to cover and placed little sticky notes here and there for fear my aging cogs will not retain. i realize all along i was purging with the wrong intentions, i am thankful to marie for pointing this out. it is not about what you wish to get rid of, but what you choose to keep and why. what brings you joy the moment you look at it and only keeping those joyful things in your life. she also holds your hand when it comes to letting mementos and photos go.

i have come to the conclusion i hang onto the past, always have and i wonder if i always will? according to marie, i will not if i follow her easy but strict rules for tidying up once and for all. i find it even more interesting that it takes a stranger of whom i have only just met to give me the ability to let so many things go, things which i was hanging onto because of who gave them to me or how they came into my possession. i realize despite having these things in my life, they cannot bring back that person and all but a few of those things actually connect me to a memory of that person. i do not want to live in the past any longer.

whenever i read a book such as this, i become a believer. i like books which lighten the load we carry, i like books which help clear the air and the noise in our heads and our bodies. i did not know i liked such books until a few years back one rescued me. i like that marie believes if i tidy up (clear out) once and for all, the weight i have been feeling the past few years will be lifted. of course it is quite possible you may read the book and think she and me are quite bonkers. truth be told i think it is a little too but i do not care, all i care is, right now i can let the past go and the future, (specifically a bricks and mortar dream) and truly live in the present.

my creative corner after tidying up. fret not, Miss Ethel is safely tucked under the table resting quietly until our next spin together
i told my man all about what i had learnt (half way through the book) the other day, when he came in from spending 5 hours picking up the debris covering our acre of moss. i told him it was terribly important to hold each possession in your hand and ask the question "does this bring me joy?" and if not, then its okay to let it go, even if at one point it did. i then continued telling him we can only have things in our home that bring us joy from now on. he looked at me covered in dirt, dried bits of leaves and pine needles and said "my leaf blower and lawn mower bring me no joy, i do not need to hold them in my hand to know that. shall i thank them, then get rid of them so we can slowly be buried under a pile of yard waste?"

 darn and drat, i have a 'non believer clever bod' in my midst. alas, marie does not talk about non believers, her wisdom only goes as far as to say, 
"where you tidy, others will follow" ... mmmmm, interesting, very interesting.

Friday, November 14

woolly tattoos ...

i do not wish to do anything else, forever and ever, other than stitch woolly tattoos on knitwear.
 i am pondering stitching 
'I ♥ MY MUM' 
upon my man's sweater sleeve whilst he is at work today.

my cogs are whirring with the 'woolly tattoo' possibilities and wondering if one could travel the world with suitcase and yarn in hand, teaching folks to woolly tattoo their yarny garments. i asked my man this morn whilst he was deep in thought, if this maybe so. if i plotted and planned and worked really really hard, should we, could we, would we, possibly have a chance in a couple of years to see the world whilst woolly tattooing from town to town?
"why not?" said he distracted 

already i was elsewhere... 

ah yes indeedy! i can see it now! 
and in my head i have left home two years early

Wednesday, November 12

things, oh so many things ...

thing one: 
i blog every day, it just happens most days it stays in my head and never ever gets tippity tapped out here. today is a day of tippity tapping.

thing two: 
it has turned tres chilly around these parts, when it does so and i see frost on the ground it makes me think of old blighty. i lay in bed last night pondering if i were brave enough to wear my mittens out of the shed. this morn i arose, still pondering and decided not to rush things and instead donned my thermal vest and woolly tights.

thing three: 
there is a magazine on the paper shelves over here called Flea Market Decor and the dec/jan issue is hot off the press. you will find me on page 110 where upon a jolly nice article was written about trimming different trees for christmas. 

my lovely friend Ingrid's wood and wool x-mas tree is in one of the photos and if perchance you wish for such a little wood festive tree for yourself you can find them in her most spiffy shop alongside of crochet patterns and other bits of wood and woolly goodness. 

thing four: 
last night i embarked on an embroidery project despite it being against the rules and regulations laid down in my newly made set of rules and regulations. 

i should be thinking of making wares for the up and coming Markers Market on december 6th at Tolt Yarn and Wool. yes i should, for last year it was really rather wonderful and so many dearies came to see me, i am hopeful they will this year too but they will not if i spend my time embroidering selfishly for myself and do not have a thing to put upon my little table at the Makers Market. i have had one thought, my folks arrive shortly and i am thinking they will probably want to insist upon helping make things with me! i will say "no no no, dearest folks, i will not hear of it" and they will say "oh but Tif, it truly would make us so happy to help you and spend quality crafting time altogether, please please let us help you make" and that will be it, i will have no choice for i would not wish to make them sad and think they are not wanted.

thing five: 
a little whiles ago, Karen Templer of Fringe Association invited me to be part of her Our Tools, Ourselves series where she asks 'makers of all sorts' questions about their tools.

 i must confess i was quite trembley about the whole thing because Karen's blog is a big knitted fish in a big yarny sea. a big yarny sea i have found myself doggy paddling in, ever since being thrown in the deep end a year ago when Tolt opened its doors. putting aside my dog paddling ways, if you would care to ganders what thrilling answers i came up with to very interesting and thoughtful questioning, then please click here or click here or click, click, clickity, click here

thing six: 
as i have been clearing my head and my shed quite manically of late, and then fretting i will clear so much away, nothing will be left in my head nor my shed, i realized this could and never would be. all i was doing was making space for opportunities to present, or doors to open, or perhaps not, does not matter. for what mattered was what i noted upon my clearing ways, as i bagged things for thrift, stacked others to sell, plotting and planning our next move, not actually knowing exactly when it would be nor where we would go, it finally happened. the moment that caused a crack in my heart four years ago when our #1 left home and subsequently, two others followed in her footsteps, the moment that left me struggling to move forward feeling quite visible and alone without them by my side. 

well that cracked heart i do believe has patched and pieced itself together again, it may have taken four years, with many a dip in the road, but i have got there in the end.
 and it was with rather a tearful moment i realized sitting amongst the piles of 'to-gos' and 'to-stays' that when the time comes for the last of my lot to leave in the near future, i will be more than ready suitcase in hand, a skip to my step and my man by my side, to start a new chapter, taking with me many treasured possessions, most of which i will be carrying in my head and my heart and not as one might have suspected, my little suitcase.

Thursday, November 6

YOTH yarns and my bees knees buddy Veronika ...

i am tres excited as this weekend i get to pottle around knitfit. you can find out all about knitfit right here if you are local to Seattle and fancy a pottle too. if you are not local you are still most welcome to click on the link and have a moisy because this blog is all inclusive and i would not want any dear reader to hang their head and weep, thinking they cannot click on a link just because they don't live in my neck of the woods.

i am tres excited because 
a) i did not know i was going till recently 
b) because although i am not signed up to do any classes all the classes look most worthy of taking
c) the marketplace and the vendors are tippity top yarny quality
d) my friend Veronika will be there launching her yarn into the big wide world

i crocheted these fingerless mitts with YOTH yarn kindly gifted to me last christmas by Veronika

can i tell you how i met Veronika?
i know some of you have heard mention of her before on this here blog. for you see Veronika crossed my path nearly a year ago when i started loitering working at Tolt Yarn and Wool. Ve is probably the most beautiful person i have ever seen, i have no idea if she knows this, but she is. well fortunately for me, Ve took me under her knitty wing and slowly but surely departed knowledge of yarns and knitting upon my little cogs. she kindly tolerated my many senior moments of asking the same question exactly a week later and never ever mocked my squares and rectangle ways. i would often offer up my thoughts and where i was going and she would always so very nicely listen patiently and then start her response with the words "that is great, but can i tell you something Tif?" whereupon she would enlighten me.

this small miracle of two sleeves and a cardi which actually fits would not have happened if wise ways had not been departed upon me, by my buddy Ve
and so it has come to be, whilst Veronika was saving the likes of me in a yarn shop, she had also quit her cubicle life and decided to follow her dream. a dream filled with yarn and here we are, one year later and she has done it, truly quite extra ordinarily done it! YOTH yarns have been stocked in our wool shop for some time, never staying put for very long, her gradient dyed skeins have literally caused a stampede (well okay, a tres long line but stampede did sound quite thrilling). the company has grown so much so, her yarn line is now dyed in Maine, all staying true to roots she started in her kitchen a few months back. 

YOTH has a webshop too which launched two weeks ago and if you are wondering why the DK weight is called Big Sister and the fingering weight is called Little Brother, well that is because it is exactly what this company is, a big sister and a little brother working alongside of many invisible family members to get a business venture and a dream, off the ground. 

it is quite a remarkable and inspiring story and that is why i am beyond tres excited to pottle around knitfit on sunday and happen upon YOTH yarns and see my friend Veronika, in all her glorious yarny surroundings, doing what she does besty best, shining brightly in her own little light, for all to see.