When Crochet is Not My Friend

ScannedImageIt almost never fails, this time of year brings out the anxiety in me. It feels like all the deadlines of life accumulate at this junction, and unfortunately crochet can lead to more problems than solutions.

This might sound odd. How can crochet be any kind of problem? Well for me it boils down to multi-tasking. Crochet is not a very multi-tasking friendly medium, it helps to relax and express creativity, and it even helps me not to reach for every piece of chocolate at every moment of the day (as my hands are busy working and cannot readily reach them). Yet when it comes to dealing with autumn crochet can be too much of my distraction.

DSCF0561A prime example of this occurred yesterday. I was planning on having a blog post sharing some of my fall happenings, like making quince and grape jelly, apple butter, and maybe even fresh homemade apple pie. I was excited about getting things done yesterday, and eagerly got into my juggle of everything that I could attempt to accomplish. I should mention here that I do live on a small farm, and this time of year is when the majority of my fruits need to be harvested, and after they are harvested I need to do something with them. Over the years I have realized that my harvest is completely different from year to year; some years I have a bounty of pears, others it maybe figs or walnuts, this year it is apples and zinfandel grapes.  That does not mean that I do not receive any of the other fruits, it just means that the crop of those mentioned was greater in size then the rest and larger than normal.

MP900384696So, as I began juicing the grapes for jelly, I also began cutting and cooking quince to create its jelly. As I was waiting for the quince to simmer and slowly break down and release their flavor and pectin to the water, I would work on a crochet project; getting up from my hook to check my cooking pot. This went on for a while. Then it happens, as it all too frequently does, time gets away from me. The fruit began to burn on the bottom of the pot, and add a not so very nice flavor to my jelly, all while I am creating.

My hook can sometimes be my downfall, it can be all to consuming and allow me to become lost in thought all too easily. So now that I have thrown out one batch of quince jelly, and need to work myself up into making a second, and then find a way to work up my stitches without having then completely distracting me.

My Needed Crochet Distraction

ScannedImageI am not sure if I have really appreciated the distraction that crochet has been to me until reflecting on this last week.

I spent 6 days in the beautiful city of Manchester, New Hampshire, for the 20th Anniversary Celebration of the Crochet Guild of America, at the Knit & Crochet Show (mark your calendars, next year it will be in San Diego, California, from July 22-26, 2015). I was taking several interesting classes, as well as moderating and teaching some groups. It was a busy week, and then I get the call from home that there is a wildfire near my home. Now with the severe drought in California right now, any murmur of fire can quickly turn into something catastrophic, and being 3000 miles from home and family does not make it any easier. Fortunately the crochet community is a very supportive one, and many people shared their well wishes, good thoughts and prayers. (Fortunately firefighters got the upper hand and my home was spared, unfortunately 19 other families lost their homes during the event, and my thoughts and prayers continue to go out to them).

But during this anxious time, I had crochet. I may not have picked up my hook as much as I normally would have, as I did not have my thoughtless project with me, but the support of all things crochet helped to keep me together. IMG_6186.1

After I returned home, my sister went in for a relatively routine procedure. However there have been some complications, so once again I turn to crochet. I am anxious, as I am helpless once again to do anything, but the simple rhythm of the hook in my hand and the yarn in my fingers seems to help calm me (or at least it keeps me from stress eating).

The situation with my sister is not quite resolved, but at least I have crochet to help keep me grounded. I hope all will be well, and once my mind is a little less distracted, I will share all the wonderful and creative things that made my travels fun and enjoyable (I was not stressed out about home the entire time).