Wednesday, December 31, 2008

2008 Creative Year in Review - Part 1

It is perhaps a little known fact that I am a complete sucker for New Year's Eve and New Year's Day. I buy completely into it every year - as both a time to reflect on the year that's past and a time to hope for the year to come. There's just something so magical in the promise of a new beginning!

Last year I sat down with my journal to do an in-depth review and examination of my life in 2007. While I won't bore you with that kind of detail (I believe it was close to 20 pages long when I was done - and I only sat it aside because I didn't have the time to keep going.), I do want to take some time to reflect on my creative journey in 2008.

There's actually a lot to cover, so I'm going to do this in two posts. Otherwise, some of you might run screaming, and we don't want that, now do we!

Knitting - obviously - remains my passion. Thanks to my Notebook on Ravelry, it was easy to put together a comprehensive look at the work I did in 2008. My 33 completed projects included:
  • 4 hats

  • 5 children's sweaters - including 3 baby surprise jackets

  • 3 pair of child-sized socks

  • 5 pair of socks for me

  • 4 lace scarves

  • surprisingly, only 1 lace shawl

  • 4 pair of fingerless mitts

  • 1 pair of mittens

  • a mini sweater

  • a bunch of mini socks in two bunches

  • 2 adult cardigans - one having been on the needles for way too long

  • a simple shawl for a class sample

It really doesn't feel like I did that much (I can feel a few friends groaning), but I do have to remember that I lost almost a month at the beginning of the year because of a broken finger. I also spent a lot more time this year spinning.

The more interesting story, I feel, is in the fact that 2008 became the year of the frog. Taking trips to the frog pond this year were:
  • 5!!! shawls - including the mystery shawl which I gleefully shredded with scissors

  • 2 pair of socks

  • 3 sweaters - including my maternity sweater

With the exception of the mystery shawl and two of the sweaters, most of the frogging happened fairly early in the project, so it's not as disastrous as it sounds. Most of the items were frogged because they spent too long hanging around on the needles, a sign that they were either never going to be finished or were headed for gauge problems later on. The socks simply weren't working for me, and the maternity sweater was a tent that contained an awful lot of great yarn that I wanted to reuse.

Beyond being a practical act, the frogging also reflects an ongoing commitment to only knitting the things that I want to knit. My big lesson in 2007 was that 'obligatory' knitting hurt - literally. At the time I was still fighting a touch of carpal tunnel that seemed to conveniently flair up any time I knit for any reason other than pleasure. In 2008 the lesson went a step further, and I actually thought for a while that I was finished with knitting forever. A long talk with my BKB resulted in a stash reorganization, the likes of which has never been seen before in this house and is not likely to be seen again. I tossed my years-old knitting plan and began happily knitting only what felt good at the moment and frogging whatever bugged me. It's a simple rule that continues to work for me.

Other knitting news of note - I began teaching knitting classes this year for Hillcreek Yarn Shoppe, which is something I quickly discovered that I LOVE. The cat-herding position with our knitting group through the Columbia Weavers and Spinners guild fell to me...ha ha. My friend Jenn was given the label of, 'my BKB,' during one of my classes, and it rather hilariously stuck. I managed to surprise my friend Shelda once or twice with knitting news and/or new patterns before she could surprise me. (Although she has me way outclassed in that game!)

Curiously, upon reviewing last year's journal entries I found a list of things that I desperately wanted to knit. I did none of them this year, and they are all things I still desperately want to knit. The only progress I actually made on the list was to purchase a copy of the pattern for the Princess Shawl. Honestly, I am a bit bothered that I ignored my own wishes so completely. That needs to be fixed.

Whew! I think that just about covers the knitting! We'll do the rest in another entry!


A Day That Is Dessert said...

Impressive list of completed projects! It's neat to see such a passion for a craft.

Happy New Year to you and your family! xoxo

Margene said...

How'd I miss this post! You had a very good year!