Who Needs Sweaters?
They say that fall is the time when people get serious about knitting again. That was the case when I worked at the yarn store -- things really picked up in September and October. But who needs sweaters when it's October 6 and it's 88 degrees?
I doubt if my extra knitting lately has had much to do with the weather. I think it's mostly just due to stress. Higher stress levels require more knitting time.
Last weekend, I finished the latest in a long line of baby blankets. It was definitely a quick project -- less than two weeks isn't too bad for a blanket, if you ask me. And it turned out nice and soft and squishy. The picture didn't turn out the best (there's something a little messed up about the colors), but here it is. I'm sure you get the idea...
I was determined to get the blanket done on Sunday -- because I wanted to bring it in to show the girls on Monday. And I couldn't actually *work* on it on Monday -- because Miss A and I had declared it Dishcloth Day.
When I arrived at the store, Miss S the Little was already there. She was still working away on her sock, though there was one little problem -- she had no idea where she was. So after consulting with her mom, we figured out where she was (and then we fudged the pattern a bit to make the numbers work). She spent the rest of the day working on the gusset -- and fighting with her stitches, which are so ridiculously tight that she's building some serious arm muscles while wrestling with them. She really needs to chill a little -- or I fear that she'll have a stroke before she's 20. I've told her that once she finishes her sock, I'm going to teach her to knit more loosely -- because knitting is not supposed to be that stressful.
Miss A arrived a little bit late -- and, according to her mom, in a cranky mood. But we cheered her up right away with talk of dishcloths and other such craziness. (Emily: I also told her about your brilliant tiny-safety-pin idea for the Knitted Goth, and she *loved* it -- I'm sure she ran right home to dig some safety pins out of her mom's collection.) Miss A and I both picked out stitch patterns from my handy-dandy pattern books, and we got to work. Miss A, Miss S, and I actually had a ton of fun this week. There was much giggling -- mostly, it seems, on my account.
As I packed up and got ready to go, I set a goal for myself. I told the girls that I was determined to start a sweater this week -- one that I would actually finish instead of ripping out again. You see, I've had horrible luck with sweaters recently. The green one was ripped out once -- and it's about to be ripped out again. And I was almost done with the blue and brown one this spring when I decided that I hated it and ripped it out. So on Monday night, I decided to give it another try. After all, I figure that it'll be sweater weather eventually, and I'll want a new sweater. So I cast on with the blue and brown varigated yarn again. I have a completely different pattern in mind this time -- another top-down cardigan, but with an overlapping front. I've already divided for the sleeves, and I still like it -- so that's a start.
Since this week was an extra-busy, extra-stressful one, I ended up picking up my needles a lot. When my computer got cranky and decided to take its dear sweet time in opening documents, I'd pick up the dishcloth that I leave next to my desk chair. When I was brewing up another cup of coffee, I'd work a few more stitches on the sweater. I figure every stitch helps.
Last night, though, I took a little time off from knitting -- because there were more urgent matters at hand. It was opening night of the hockey season, and Paul and I were there -- both to celebrate the new season and to celebrate our anniversary (6 whole years!) -- as has been our tradition since we moved to Columbus.
It seemed a little strange to be heading to a hockey game when it was in the 80s. I actually held off on donning my jersey until I got out of the car at the parking garage. But once I got into the crowd, it didn't matter how hot it was. I was going to wear my jersey, even if it meant slowly roasting to death.
There's just something about opening night. There's so much excitement. So much anticipation. So much...hope. The Blue Jackets (as my nine-year-old nephew is quick to point out) don't have the best of records. In past season, they haven't won a heck of a lot. And they're the only team in the NHL that's never made it to the playoffs. We all know this. And, considering we were playing our first game of the season against the Ducks, the guys whose names are currently being engraved on The Cup, I wasn't expecting a whole heck of a lot. But on opening night, anything is possible. And nothing can compare to the energy in Nationwide Arena on opening night.
This year, though, things were different -- and I'm not just talking about the cannon that the Blue Jackets had introduced, to celebrate each goal. I'm talking about the game. Right from the beginning, it was pretty clear that something had happened to the boys over the summer. They were fast. They were tough. And they weren't messing around. By the end of the first period, we were up 2-0 -- and the crowd jumped up for a standing ovation. I've never heard the crowd at the Arena so frenzied.
After three intense periods of hockey, a few goals had been scored, some blood had been spilled, and my voice was totally gone. And the scoreboard looked like this:
It was a good night at Nationwide Arena.
Ah, hockey season. My favorite time of year.