Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Slice of Life - Knitting to Learn, Reflect and Celebrate

I have recently retired from being an elementary school principal, so I fill my days with others things besides being at school.  I miss the teachers and the kids but am continuing to learn, reflect and celebrate.  This is my first Slice of Life post.  It's part of my motto:  Never Stop Learning.

I have always been a knitter.  I use to knit much more when I was younger.  Of course, the crazy life of being a mother, wife, teacher, and principal often got in the way of settling down with the knitting in my hands.  But now I have time - precious time - to choose the things I want to do.

I usually knit some everyday.  I also try to read and write everyday.  My most reflective time is when I sit down to knit.  Somehow, life slows down while I am knitting.  My hands take on the routine of the knitting while my brain has time to wander.

Yesterday, I went to the store to purchase yarn for a blanket for my grandson.  I was looking forward to working in shades of blue and grey.  It seemed to be a calming notion.  However, my grandson had a different idea in mind.  Even though he is only five, his favorite color is red and he wants Ohio State colors (grey, white and scarlet) in his blanket.  So I learned to be flexible

In conversation with my daughter, I discovered that JoAnn Fabrics accepts coupons from Michaels Craft Store and Hobby Lobby.  So I scoured the latest newspaper ads and got on line to gather my coupons.  I ended up with seven 40% off coupons and headed to the store.  So I learned to be frugal.

When I sat down last evening to begin knitting, I was tackling an unfamiliar pattern for the blanket.  I worked on a sample swatch, planned my color combinations and began.  But after a bit of knitting nearly a dozen rows, I discovered that I miscounted and made a mistake a few rows back.  New patterns can be tricky.  I had to learn two new stitches and had to keep careful count as I went along.  I had to take out several rows before I could continue.  So I learned, once again, that mistakes are all part of learning.

I will keep at it.  The blanket is a big project and will take me weeks, maybe months, to complete.  Being a knitter teaches you patience as your project unveils slowly over time.  So I learned that knitting takes patience and persistence.

While I knit, I have time to think.  As I work on this project, I will have many hours to reflect on life and its ups and downs.  I will have time to celebrate as the blanket grows in size.  I will have time to think about my precious grandson and the person he is growing up to be.  The life of a knitter is one that is filled with learning, reflection and celebration.  I am glad I am a knitter. 


  1. Welcome to the slice of life community! Thanks for this post- I do not know how to knit, and my local library holds a "Knitting for Nitwits" every Tuesday night that I've had my eye on but have been too shy to go. I think your post may have inspired me to be brave! Have fun knitting and learning.

  2. Welcome to slicing!I enjoyed reading your post about knitting and how so many other things in life connect with knitting. I also enjoy knitting. Nothing complicated, but it keeps my hands busy (so they do not go to my mouth)!

  3. I tried knitting when I was a kid, but being a left hander, no one could explain how I was supposed to do this, so I gave up. I admire anyone who can take knitting needles and yarn and create something useful and warm. I hope you will continue join in on Tuesdays so we can read how the blanket is going. Welcome Karen, I look forward to more of your writing. Congratulations on retiring!

  4. I only started slicing a little bit ago - welcome! It's fun! I don't knit, but I enjoyed hearing about your learning experiences! I love when people are creative! Sounds like you're enjoying your retirement!

  5. You and Franki are both writing along the same theme of choosing how we spend our time. I love how your perspective layered on top of Franki's and allowed me to really absorb the truth. We CAN choose how to spend our time. I'm glad you are slicing today!

  6. So happy you are Slicing! Fun to start this Slicing journey with you:-) And, I get the knitting thing and so glad you've rediscovered it. I imagine someday I'll get back to crocheting but not in the very near future!

  7. Mistakes are part of learning, persistence is key--two big ideas I try to encourage, foster, inculcate, to the best of my ability in my classroom.

  8. Karen, I enjoyed reading about your learning within knitting. Learning does extend outside a classroom and all through our lives. I really enjoyed reading about flexibility to make your grandson happy and part of the process. I hope you will share a final picture in a future slice.

  9. Isn't it an interesting journey to have new pockets of time to use, to search for the things you enjoy, and to learn new things. Happy knitting.