Monday, March 22, 2010

Where it All Started


My mind is a bit blank on topics, perhaps it's all those ideas that were bouncing around in my head the last two weeks. We still remain RV-less and on firm ground. The dream is getting farther away, but I still am simplifying my life. But I thought, why not tell the story of how I learned to knit?

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I grew up in the country where you could barely see the lights of your neighbor's house, and my closest friend on the street was about a 5 minute walk away on a dirt road. Of course walking to school was uphill, but only one way. My siblings and I had to find ways to entertain ourselves. I was the last of them, and 6 years apart so I was sometimes bored and watched a lot of TV.

One of my favorite cartoons was the Flintstones. Wilma often got out her needles and some birds and knit things. "Knit one, purl two, boys," she said to the birds or something like that. So I thought that it looked like fun. I had already learned to chain skeins and skeins of yarn into pretty braids, undo them and chain them again. Why not knit?

We also had a closet that was stuffed with fun things. Sort of like the treasures you'd find in the attic. Past the boxes of things we used regularly, I struck gold. A bag of yarn, needles and a couple of how to books! I brought them to my mom, wanting her to show me how to do it.

"I don't remember how to do that stuff," she said.

I was crushed. How was I going to learn? So I studied the half finished objects that were in the bag and took them apart, trying to figure it out. Finally, I sat down with the two how-to books and taught myself how. Pretty soon, I was churning out essential things for a pre-teenage girl; baby sets, acrylic mittens, acrylic washcloths and was thrilled.

Once the word was out that I was knitting, I got yarn! Bags and bags of colorfully, tightly balled acrylic. Oh, the joy! What nice people they were to give me all of that nice, nice, yarn. What a fun word knitting was. I found something that I could sit and do, to stave off boredom and when the girl down the road didn't want to play with me. It was bliss.

Years later, I was watching an Elizabeth Zimmerman DVD. She said something like, "some people wrap the yarn around the wrong way and twist their stitches." My mouth hung open. I did that! I had taught myself to be a twisted knitter. I promptly mended my ways and found that knitting wasn't as hard as I had made it out to be.

Thank you, Wilma Flintstone and Elizabeth Zimmerman. You made a real difference in my life.

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Thank you for all the posts from last week! I so enjoy reading them. I ran the RNG and it picked #5...so Cinnamoon send me your addy - you've won!

For this week's giveaway, I am giving a copy of one of my favorite books, America Knits. Originally published under the title, "Knitting in America," I picked up this book as one of my first non-garage sale knitting books and it gave me many dreams. Although I've never knit anything from it, I treasure this book.


In order to enter for this prize, please reply to this post with whatever you wish. I am doing something different this week, and not advertising my giveaway. Post your reply by Saturday March 20th midnight, CST. I will use a RNG to pick a reply at random. You are welcome to reply more than once, but only your first reply will be entered. Good luck, and have a fun fiber week!

5 comments:

jessecreations said...

Elizabeth Zimmerman rocks!

I learned to knit when I was a kid, then I taught myself crochet a few years ago and I'm braving the world of knitting once again. It's frustrating, to be sure, but I'm addicted!

Jess
jessicacook17@hotmail.com

Kitten With a Whiplash said...

Mom taught me crochet when I was about 8 or 9. She didn't knit, but I tried it on my own, several times. It wasn't tough, and I wasn't bad at it, but never took it up seriously until a few years ago. Thanks for the giveaway, this is a great book, as you know!

One Sheep said...

Most of my knitting books are pre-loved, but this is one no one around here seems willing to give up. I've seen it at the library, it's full of great patterns. I'd love a copy, thanks for the chance.

Andrea said...

My mom taught me to knit and crochet many years ago. But it has been through the help of the internet that I actually became a knitter/crocheter.

Trista said...

Love that story!!!! I'm glad EZ stepped in a shaped you up ;-)