women of a certain age are like sunflowers; they know how to turn their faces to the sun.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Simple Gifts

"Tis a gift to be simple
Tis a gift to be free
Tis a gift to come down where we ought to be
And when we find ourselves in the place just right
T'will be in the valley of love and delight."

It is hard to get excited about knitting today. The news here in the US is full of both the worldwide financial meltdown and our hotly contested race for president. We are worried about our retirement funds, the kid's college expenses, how we are going to make both ends meet at an increasingly lean middle.

These are important issues and I hope all of us in the US are registered to vote. This year, no matter whether we live in a "blue" state or a "red" state, we are all touched by the most important state - the state of our union. Never before, in my lifetime and maybe in yours, have the challenges facing us been so urgently in need of our thoughtful consideration and civic engagement.

Of course, we all know knitting began as a strictly utilitarian occupation. If your family had cold feet, you knitted socks. But the Dickensian days of Bob Cratchit wrapping his muffler thrice around his neck to compensate for the lack of coal in the grate are long past.

These days, we knit because we want to, not because we have to. We face a plethora of choices: in yarn, in patterns, in local yarn stores, in on line purveyors, in knitting groups, in blogs, in fiber festivals, in what groups we belong to on Ravelry. What we make often costs more than we could buy the same item for, in these days of mass production and foreign labor.

So how do we cope with our strained budgets and our shrinking discretionary income? The same way knitters always have. We adjust. We make do. We find creative ways to live our lives and pursue our craft. We remember the heart and soul of our pursuit: the beauty of our hands, the warmth of our love, the comfort of our community.

A lot of us will knit from our stash. Many will increase the charity knitting we do, as more families fall into need. Some will work on those forgotten WIPs, lurking in the depths of our closets.

And all of us will rejoice in the blessing that knitting is in our lives.

In these uncertain days, I am beyond gratified (try amazed!) that you choose to spend your shrinking dollar and hard earned free time with Sunflower Designs.

I hope you and your family are weathering
the financial storm and that you are drawing peace and comfort from your knitting.

I have every faith that our community will rise to meet the challenge that lies before us. Knitters are resilient people. We know what is important.

And we know how to turn, turn, till we come down right.


Anonymous said...

You're so right about needing to be concerned about the state of our nation, not whether we're "blue" or "red". I find that knitting calms me and forces worries out of my head while I'm concentrating on my stitching. I'm trying to use stash, combine trips to the LYS with other necessary trips, such as the grocery store, and other ways and have become more aware of cost of things. By the way, I just ordered your "Pumpkin Patch" patterned scarves and awaiting download instructions or mail - however you send them.

hokieknitter said...

Hi, I love your pumpkin patch and leaves of grass scarves and purchased both but am also waiting for download or email instructions.

Debbie said...

I'm so glad I clicked from Ravelry and came to your spot. Beautiful, thought provoking post to start the day.

WoolyWorm said...

What a lovely sentiment and so well expressed. I found you through L&V, but I'll be back.