One of my favourite expressions is “The universe seeks balance”. I really believe it. Water seek level, happy things are followed by sad times, snow after summer, light after dark. In the end it all comes out more or less even. Some days it can be pretty hard to connect with the cosmic wisdom of it all. You know, those days where the guy who is supposed to pay you doesn’t, the dishwasher starts making an expensive noise, You pull a muscle in your arse doing yoga, you start making lists of the things that you like about your family, just so that you don’t strangle them all (I love Sam because expensive things make her “nervous”), your favourite pants in the whole world have a rip in the knee, and it turns out that your Latvian mittens are a stinking pile of crap? You know, those days? Those are the days that I have to remind myself that The Universe Seeks Balance and that it will all eventually come up even.
I didn’t have to wait long. The Universe was totally on her game yesterday.
The Top Ten Reasons That It Turns Out That I Was Right About The Balance Thing.
10. My brother brought me a jar of Wasabi Peas. He promised me they were good and Dude didn’t let me down. New favourite food, Wasabi Peas.
9. Norma is seriously funny.
8. As of today, Megan does not say “hello” or “hi Mommy”. She says
7. Margene sent me this:
It is signed by the goddess Nancy Bush herself. I am not worthy.
(PS. while you are over at Margene’s, check out the indigo gloves she’s knitting. If that doesn’t impress you, well, nothing will.)
6. I pulled back the mittens and re-knit them. It turns out that they aren’t a stinking pile of crap. I like them again.
I even believe that I may finish them. (See that? Didn’t say “would”, I said “may”. As Claudia knows, it is important not to anger the knitting goddess. She is vengeful and her fury is mighty, cruel, swift and pointy.
5. I got to go the the S&B at Lettuce Knit last night. I left the house, I saw other people and I came home after dark, just like a real grown-up. Jane was there and putting a beaded cast off on a Harlot poncho that was to die for. Aven was there and I got to meet Dani, complete with her finished Klaralund! Laura was there, working on a really neat noro bag. Scads of other people were there, Joyce and….Damn. I’m really bad with names. Fun, nice people.
4. Some months ago, my friend Denny told me that I had to give her anything in my stash that was 100% natural fibres and more than 10 year old. I gave her some stuff, no idea what she was up to. Some weaving thing. She made me a cool spindle bag the last time I gave her stuff. I gave her this cream coloured thin yarn that had never really grown on me.
Last night, Denny gave me this.
It’s a shawl/table runner/scarf thing. (Denny is the Queen of the multipurpose item.) She wove my…well, what I thought was crap, together with this pretty organic silk stuff and stripes of random blue yarns. There’s some Fleece Artist, other peoples leftovers…even some Handicrafter cotton. It’s to die for.
2. My Husband is so confident about my knitting prowess, that (lest any of you think him unkind for pointing out the missing braid) that he asked “Why” I had made them different. He has such faith that he figured it had to be on purpose.
Had to be.
1. I lost my temper and kicked the dishwasher for making the expensive noise. (It was also not spinning the washing arm thingie).
While it is probably too soon to tell, it would seem that I fixed it.
You might not want to stand to near me today. In the interest of “Balance”, I’m probably going to be struck by lightning.

32 thoughts on “Balance

  1. Oh man…now I want to learn to weave too…sigh. As if I had time, space, and/or money for one more thing. What nice friends you have, Ms. Harlot. I suspect you must be an equally good friend…which would demonstrate the balance thing again, aye? 😉

  2. Oh! Wasabi peas are some of my favorite snacks.
    Does the balance thing go with my dad’s favorite saying… “everything in moderation”? I always try to remember that, but it’s not reflected in my stash or my obsessive compulsive knitting behavior.
    Latvian mittens are stunning. They were even with that itsy bitsy mistake. They will be gorgeous when you’ve finished them!

  3. I am happy for you. Balance is nice, if you look at it through rose-coloured glasses or kind of squinty-eyed perspective (you know, so all the crappy things don’t glare at you with such vivid detail!). While executing #1, I hope wore steel-toed boots. Wouldn’t want you to jinx the whole balance thing with broken toes. On a personal note, I believe my universe would be much more in balance if I HAD a dishwasher to kick! Doing dishes by hand when I am on a baking kick really sucks.

  4. Love your woven gift. WOW. You have very generous and talented friends, you lucky, lucky woman!

  5. Rhinebeck.
    Crisp fall air. Red and yellow trees. Barns filled with vendors as far as the eye can see. Vendors in tents. Vendors on the grass. Fleece sale. A steaming cup of coffee (or three). Commando-raid shoe/clothes shopping.
    Sheep. Wool. sheepn’wool.

  6. You are worthy…we are all worthy. Everything in the book is wonderful and hope you’ll enjoy many of the patterns. I’m going to start Anu’s gloves soon. Thanks for the compliment on my Indigo glove.

  7. A little “percussive maintenance” (as I like to call it) can do wonders for home appliances.
    The mittens are looking absolutely wonderful! I am in awe of your mitten-knitting prowess. Maybe someday, when I grow up, I will try something as fancy as that. For now? I will just work on my Thrummy mittens and call it good.

  8. Here’s some more balance for ya. Reading the comments for yesterday, I came across variation #2 of Second Mitten Syndrome – knitting the second mitten identical to the first one, so that you have two mittens for one hand, not one mitten for each. Who, I asked, as I cast on for the second of the two mittens I’m making, who would do that?
    Now I know.
    My only consolation is that the mitten was just plain brown lopi. No hopes of latvian fabulousness here!

  9. Balance is good. The throw/blanket/runner is so beautiful. You are lucky to have loving friends. I always wanted to have a loom – did some weaving many years ago and loved it. Maybe it’s time to think about starting to weave. But then I would have even less time to knit.

  10. Oh, I love that quick-kick-appliance-fix feeling!!It’s not quite as good as the stinking-pile-of-crap to I-like-them/it-again feeling, but it’s good (and I hope it holds).

  11. On dishwashers….in one of my other incarnations, I sold appliances. One common cause of expensive noise and arm thingy not going around.
    The little holes in the arm thingy can get guck and crap in them. If its there, take a pair of sturdy tweezers and pull it out. I used to make $20 a time “fixing” dishwashers like that. May not be it, but the percussive maintenace (love that phrase!) would have knocked some loose if that was the problem.
    I too beleive in balance. My Ukrainian Auntie’s saying for this translates loosely as “God punishes”. Works for me.
    Barb B.

  12. Ah, all is right in Yarlot Land again. Oh, and here’s #3 — tonight is reality tv night! Yay!
    (I don’t know about you, but my knitting progress has picked up considerably with the influx of new must-see tv.)

  13. Well, my office is moving so I have to work an extra day, I’m coming down with Martian Death Flu and feel too dizzy to spin the fiber I have to have done by a competition next Saturday, my dog is going through adolescence, and there are two pounds of fiber floating around the universe that can’t seem to find their way to my door dispite my having paid for them and the company sending them in my direction, so you may be safe from lightening. Balence may be tilting the scales down around me (oh, yeah, I’m also feeling fat. Add that to the list)
    On the other hand, just last night I nearly bought my husband some wasabe peas but decided not to, since he’s not wont to try new things if they look like they could be healthy (and the mention of a veggie in the name does imply that, doesn’t it?) but I think I may give it a shot anyway and cover up the word “pea” with my thumb when I hand it to him.

  14. Hey, Babe, nice braids, heh, heh.
    I am blessed, I live in Seattle, it doesn’t get cold enough (usually) for mittens, so I can just admire yours as works of art.

  15. I’ve been hit by lightning, and it didn’t suck as much as you’d think (it even got a mention on Paul Harvey of “…..good day” fame), tho I don’t tempt fate. My daughter loves Wasabi peas, but cut back when she read how much tropical oil they’re fried in (moderation..balance). We kept a cheap little TV/VCR going for an extra year with judicious application of the flat of one’s hand to the top whenever the picture started to fade (and then used it as a large radio for a couple more months), and the only way to restart our old washer when it unbalanced itself in the middle of the spin cycle was to turn your back to it and administer a swift mule-kick. The gift shawl and the mittens are beautiful. Dare you tempt the wrath of the knitting Goddess by making matching socks? My daughter Mary turns 13 on Oct 16, loves sheep (mary..little lambs..) and knits, and we only live an hour from Rheinbeck. Hope to see you there. If you wear Latvian socks, I promise not to drool (much).

  16. Hey, I made those gloves! They’re fabulous, tho’ mine aren’t blue.
    Your mittens are lovely. I am going to reveal a lot about my lack of mitten experience when I ask, how did you manage to do a thumb without a gusset? I don’t get it. The lace gloves are the only thing I’ve knit that must accommodate a thumb, and I’ve started reading the Folk Mitten book, but your BEE-utiful mittens don’t seem to abide by either physical law.

  17. I saw a “Beaded Cast Off” mentioned in today’s blog.
    Please – could you tell me how to do one, or where I might find instructions?
    One of my Harlot ponchos is begging for some beads.

  18. I nearly split a gut over this morning’s post. Even Kevin (who knows only what I tell him about knitting and related arts) laughed out loud. Ahoy, Harlot! Thanks for making us laugh today. God knows we needed it (only moments earlier I was crying over a crate of packing paper).

  19. Wasabi peas are the BEST! And they’re NOT good for you – they’re all fried and stuff. So chow down! Now you just need to try that green tea ice cream, and you’ll be all up on your Asian junk food.

  20. you lucky girl! The throw looks b-e-a-U-TIFUL!
    To console you and summon the Balance Gods to stay by your side (and my side too) — I reknit my Estonian mitten cuff for the same reason you did. I won’t tell you about my other reknitting ventures on my mittens (I don’t want to anger the balance gods), but the reknitting was worth it. Your mittens are totally cool …. Surviver is tonight, I’m really mad at Donald Trump. keep up with me. Julie

  21. Oh, Stephanie, that thing is just gorgeous. You have wonderful friends! I can only wish I could talk MY old stash into turning into something magical like that. Wow!

  22. Your mittens are lovely! After you’ve enjoyed them for a few years, you won’t look at them and remember how much trouble they were, you’ll just enjoy them for how lovely they are — like childbirth.

  23. The mittens do look beautiful but even just looking at them makes me anxious so i definitely wouldn’t have the patience (or skill) to make such mittens. In my house even the dog won’t eat the wasabi peas that come in the packs of japanese snacks.

  24. You might not want to stand near me today or the next day or two…Ivan’s threatening to dump a bit of rain on TX, we’re pretty far north (almost to Oklahoma) so I don’t know how much we’ll get, but I hope that the metromess doesn’t get too much, they’ve already had their share of flooding in the DFW area in June especially…
    ANYWAY, gosh you HAD to mention wasabi peas… I hope Gary is going down to Denton today, I’m going to make him get me some: I think they’re available in bulk at the Health food store down there… but I’ll wait until after Yom Kippur to indulge in them… LOL
    Keep up the great work on the mittens…
    That woven blanket is wonderful…

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