We've had an insane amount of busy-ness here. Birthdays (2), school concerts (5), holidays (8 days of Chanukah, plus Thanksgiving), teacher gifts, staff gifts, hockey, basketball (x2) and, of course, work. I coped with it by drinking a lot of coffee and buying a bunch of compensatory yarn. My yarn is like my books. It is a lot more about what I want to be (or do or read) than what I actually will be (or do or read), and right now --judging by recent book and yarn acquisitions--- I'm feeling pretty optimistic about my future self. This is the only way to explain why I now have yarn for 3 sweaters, a knit t-shirt, a dozen pairs of socks, and (this is the part that gives me the giggles) two shawls. Yes, shawls. I hear they are magic to knit--a noodle-y tangle of yarn that suddenly blossoms into a work of great beauty--but I have worn a shawl exactly once in 41 years. I enjoyed the experience, but I also felt like a bit of a fraud. I have no style, and a shawl, or even a "wrap", at a formal event is clearly something that only a person of style can carry off. Apparently, in addition to becoming a prolific knitter and a voracious reader, I plan to become a person of style. I'll let you know how this works out.
My chickens--who have no pretensions to style but who would look very much at home, if a bit old-biddy-ish, all wrapped up in shawls -- have discovered exactly who they plan to be. I helped. Monday, when I went to turn their ice maker back into a waterer (it has been a bit frosty here), I gave them a pep talk in which I explained that it was time for someone around here to start laying a few eggs, dammit. My words must have gone straight to their little birdy hearts, and they are now hens with a purpose. I discovered the first egg yesterday morning and it was the most perfect little egg I have ever seen.
Nate was so excited to hear the news when he got home from school that he bundled up and ran out to check for more eggs. Sure enough, there were two more:
There ensued a great deal of discussion among the children over egg-finding privileges. There was even a small battle over who would get to do the chore next, which my eldest quickly ended through a clever deployment of the "rights of the first-born" argument coupled with some astonishing volume. The kids were so fired up about doing that job, that two of them INSISTED on helping with dinner too. Not just the stand-next-to-mommy-and-eat-the-dinner-ingredients kind of helping, but actual, constructive participation like making a complete salad and properly setting the table. I think I'm going to lecture the chickens more often. It seems to have miraculous results.
Another way that I have coped with excessive busy-ness is by starting new projects. One might think that an excessively busy person would long to simplify, but evidently what I like to do is start a heap of projects and then complain that I don't have time to work on all my projects. One thing that has been finished, however, is my last weaving project. I don't mean my last project forever, I just mean the most recently started project. Even this is a ridiculous statement, because I set up this project in August, and on a small loom like mine, the only excuse for starting something in August and finishing it in December is pure laziness. Once I actually sat down with the loom and decided to weave, the project took about two nights to finish. The result was two placemats, both well received by the family despite my reservations as to their artistic merits:
and a "mug rug," which is what you get when you don't calculate the length of your warp accurately.
The mug rug is my favorite and I keep it on my desk as a cozy alternative to a coaster. Today, however, I noticed something out of place.
Can you tell what it is? The stapler to the right of the mug does not belong there.
I have a stapler:
It is a very friendly little stapler that I have had for about 10 years. It is reliable and reasonably safe (as far as staplers go) and minds its own business, hiding quietly behind my computer in case I need its services. Every once in a while it goes on a little vacation to someone else's room, but it always makes its way back where it belongs. It is the only stapler we have and the only stapler we need, and I -- the only authorized purchaser of office supplies in this family-- did NOT buy a new stapler.
This new stapler, with its modern design and its sneaky way of appearing unexpectedly, clearly does not belong here. I think it even looks a little sinister
and I hope it leaves soon. I really don't like these kinds of mysteries.