Mark Twain

"Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do ...
Explore. Dream. Discover." Mark Twain

Friday, September 11, 2015


Every anniversary of this terrible day the TV, the blog-sphere and social media is flooded with 9-11 remembrances.

And I support remembrances.  We must remember.

What I don't support are the images that emotionalize, sanitize or minimize the truth of that attack.  Beautiful waving national flags, a tearful statute of liberty with the smoky towers behind her, the struggles of the heroes to save lives ... those images do not show the terror, the desperation and the horror experienced by the innocent lives trapped in those burning buildings.  To remember that day with vanilla patriotic images fades the stark truth.  It separates us carefully and gently from the actual ugly event.

I don't think we should do that.

This is the image
 we should hold in our minds.

 this man!

 that some people jumped to certain death
 rather than stay in the inferno of those buildings.

 that as our innocent citizens fell from the building
  they knew with certainty that these were their last seconds of life on earth ...
approximately 10 seconds ...

 that those on the ground below
 will never forget the terrible thudding sounds of bodies hitting pavement
one after another - over and over - about 200 times.

If this post makes you upset, uncomfortable, angry, or sad, then I have achieved my goal.

We must never forget the real images.
This is how we do honor to those who died in that attack.


Post Script:
  • My last blog post on 9-11 was September 2012. The title was Jumpers.
  • From the reading I have done - it appears that the New York chief medical examiner's office does not consider these people "jumpers."  Jumping indicates a choice and would imply suicide.  These people did not have a choice probably because of the force of the explosion, the fire behind them and the lack of breathable air.  Because of these conditions the deaths were ruled homicide.  It is a small but merciful distinction.   They most certainly were murdered.

Saturday, September 5, 2015

Knitting Life

I am truly blessed to have a rich crafting life with friends and family who share similar interests.

Knitting started for me back in 1997 - before the current knitting craze took root in our society and the out shoots of spinning and weaving pulled me into their influence.  Almost 18 years ago - amazing.
My first sweater - that is large enough to fit two people.  Lesson learned about the value of  gauge swatch.
But this sweater will always be mine.  Comfortable, warm and will fit over absolutely anything
I have.  AND it is my first sweater, so it holds a special place in my heart.
Same pattern that I made for mom.
It fit mom perfectly.
I still have this sweater. It will always
be with me and it will be worn by me.  

I learned to knit as a reaction to a stress filled management job of 7 years.  Those years were filled with long days and long long weeks.  It got so crazy that it would take me 3 work days to prepare for vacation, and 3 vacations days to unwind from work.    Oh, most of that crazed life style was my own doing.  But you know it is bad when you are living and breathing a job - no hobbies, no reading for fun, friends and family time shrinking, lists upon lists of things to remember and do - all job related.

So it probably is no surprise that in 1997 it all came to a screeching halt.  I quit that job without having another job in place.  Oh, I was professional about it ... giving them four months notice, but I had an end date ... a light at the end of the tunnel ... and I was making my escape.  Thankfully I had a husband who understood.

And then I found knitting.

Actually I asked my husband about maybe taking a 7 week "learn to knit" class at my local yarn store and it was a pricey class.  He agreed with the statement, "Why not.  It is cheaper than therapy."  Hmm ... guess he saw that I was reaching critical mass in that job too.

A special picture of mom, my sister and I (L to R.).
And my sweater is the Central Park Hoodie - a
fun sweater to knit and wear.
And a knitter was born.  Knitting filled a need that nothing else could do.  It occupied my hands and mind in a meditative way - my soul needed that.  It had a beginning, middle and end - my type A personality needed that.  And it was a creative activity that produced with a beautiful item - well, maybe not beautiful the first year when my skill level was that of "rookie."  But from then on many lovely projects have emerged.

The start of my current shawl project with beads on the ends.
Knitting not only healed all the broken parts of me in those early years, but it sustained me during some of the hardest years of my life taking care of my mom.  I made several beautiful things for her during her time with me and she was buried in a shawl I made for her during the last year of her life.  It gives me comfort to know she is wrapped in something right now I made for her.

A cable and lace poncho I knitted for my daughter.
It was an great design starting at the bottom of the
poncho and decreasing your way up to the neck.
And now knitting is still giving.  This year I find myself at loose ends. Mom is gone.  My husband is becoming more or more disabled.  That "caregiver mantel" I so carefully set aside at my mom grave site is slowly and persistently finding it place back on my shoulders once again.  Knitting fills a void and allows some escape.  Nothing else is capable of keeping the edges of my life all glued together in a sane way like knitting - not even blogging.

Rigid Heddle Loom - a cozy kind of activity.
I enjoy the process and will do this again and again.
Just not right now - the knitting needles call.
I have been pulled into related crafts.  I can crochet, I do weave on occasion, and spinning fiber tugs at my desires now and then.   I love my looms, my spinning wheel and my spindles, but they will never replace my knitting needles.  Knitting is the activity my hands reach for when I need constancy, escape and peace.

A lace and bead shawl I made for my daughter that almost killed me with frustration.
I swore more during this project than any other in 17 years.
And I pledged I would never do anything life this again.

But the end result turned out beautiful I think.
And I decided in an absolute instant ...
I think I could knit something like this again.

Just like childbirth!!
Knitting can hurt like the devil and you swear "never again"
and then you forget and are just so pleased with the
object completed and you think ...
oh that wasn't so bad.
I think I could do this again!

The knitting life for me!