I Can Come Back From This

Yesterday I packed for Madrona really carefully.  Suzanne, the great lady who organizes the thing is one of my favourite people, and I’d pretty much give her anything, so when she asked what classes I wanted to teach I said “Whatever you want” and so she picked one of each and I should have thought about what that does to your luggage.  I have everything I need for four different classes, and last night when I was done assembling it all, I had to snuggle my underpants amongst the silk cocoons to make it all fit.

I have two suitcases, and they’re mostly full of class supplies, so I was packing light with personal stuff.  Nothing I didn’t need, nothing I wouldn’t use, you know the drill.  The whole time I was wildly worried that I was forgetting something.  Not something dumb or small, but something big and important and vital.  I went over my checklist about fourteen times.  I went to bed feeling worried.  I lay there in the dark going over scenarios.

Had I forgotten some class supply? I went through the list again in my head, imagining me walking though my day teaching.  Nope.

I went through my clothes and personal stuff in my mind. Underpants? Socks? Did I have shirts? Was I leaving for Seattle with no shirts? I had it all.

Was it an electronic thing? I have my laptop, my laptop charger, my phone, phone charger, iPad, iPad charger…assorted connectors to hook me up to projectors and …. I am a walking Apple Store.  There’s no way I’m missing that stuff.

I started turning the Teacher Talent Show for charity over in my mind then.  I’m responsible for it again this year, and that means I need some really weird stuff to be ready.  The rule is that what happens at the Teacher Talent Show stays at the Teacher Talent Show – there’s a media ban, so that the teachers can show you what they can do without living in fear of a youtube video that will be the sort of thing they wince about forever, and frankly, you wouldn’t believe what some of these people are able to do, outside of knitting, and well, I was pretty sure I’d worked that list too.  It wasn’t that.

It wasn’t anything, I decided, although I had a nagging terrible feeling that some huge, lurking thing was right there. Something important that I was supposed to be remembering – like an anniversary or an appointment you’ve been waiting a year for,  but try as I might, I couldn’t think of a responsibility or an item that I was supposed to do and hadn’t.  I chalked it up to generally being an anxious person who worries too much, and I went to sleep.

I didn’t feel better this morning.  If anything, I felt worse.  I went through all of my things again before I left for the airport but the little voice in the back of my mind screaming “You’re really screwing something up right now” just wouldn’t shut up. I drank coffee and surveyed my luggage – knowing it was true, and just hoped that the moment that I figured out what it was wouldn’t be too public, or something I couldn’t solve.  I got on the plane, and on the way to Vancouver I started to fall asleep, and as I did, I remembered that it was a friend’s birthday and I meant to bring them a present and for one second I thought that I had figured it out. I thought that I had forgotten her gift and that was it and then I remembered I had brought it, and the funk settled in again.    It would have been so awesome if that was it, I thought. I could have mailed her the present and this feeling would go away and it wouldn’t have happened in front of knitters and then… it hit me.

Present.  Monday is Samantha’s 20th birthday, and it is also Lou’s 2nd birthday, and while I’ve got Sam sorted, and I thought I had Lou sorted, it turns out that  I HAVE ONLY KNIT LOU’S BIRTHDAY SWEATER WITH MY MIND. AND I DIDN’T BRING THE YARN. AND IT IS WEDNESDAY AND I AM TEACHING A WHOLE LOT.

I can’t tell you if the feeling I have going on is relief that I finally figured it out, or panic that I didn’t do it and don’t have it.  Lucky for me, they sell yarn and needles at Madrona.  I got this.



110 thoughts on “I Can Come Back From This

    • See, that was my assumption. Then my reality check said that there was no way that the Yarn Harlot would forget her yarn. Underwear, or hairbrush, or something like that. But not yarn.

  1. Glad you had a great trip to Puerto Morelos and that I ran into you…..{send pic of us on square if you get the chance!}
    Lovely trip to Tulum too it sounds!!
    and now further travels in the knitting world!!!!
    all the best and maybe we will cross paths in Mexico again someday.

  2. Now that the whole knitting world knows that you forgot to knit Lou the sweater. Remember Lou is only going to be 2. It’s ok, Lou will never know, it’s our secret.

  3. Sometimes the suspense of your posts leading up to the finale has me laughing so hard I have to take a break before finishing. Your writing truly makes my cheeks hurt from smiling.
    It’s a good thing Lou is still a little guy. I expect we will see a post of a finished project in the next day or two.
    Happy Knitting! Lil

  4. You’ve totally got this! A 2 year old sweater is small and you could have it knit on your way home, ready to present when you see him to celebrate his birthday.

  5. So glad your back, now we don’t have to speak Spanish to you. Do you think there is a big difference between Mexico and Cuba? Truthful now, who had the best food? Does your mum knit? I like your socks and think maybe… if you put a little twist to it…you can call it Tuluum.

  6. May I suggest doing it as you did Tina’s Sock Summit Projects. If I were at Madrona, I would be totally thrilled to add a row or two a sweater for Lou, who’s only two.

  7. For a minute, I really thought you were going to say that you had forgotten to bring any knitting at all (although, as you said, there are yarn and needles at Madrona). The idea of being somewhere with NO knitting makes me feel panicky!

  8. I think it is very thoughtless of Lou (and Sam, for that matter) to be born in early February, so close to Christmas. That is a heavy strain on the knitters in the family! Good luck

  9. As someone who just added length to toddler sweater sleeves and undid half a shoulder seam to put in a snap, I’m sure you’ll have better luck than I. I almost died when it wouldn’t fit over his wee head!

    (also, LOVE your version of captcha!)

  10. I was voting for the bra, too.
    Lou’s sweater will be a snap, for you! Glad you figured it out so soon…
    Really wish the Teacher Talent Show was YouTube-able, but I guess it’s just more incentive to plan to attend someday…

  11. Thank goodness Lou is too young to know if it is late. He is too young to understand what ‘late’ is. Don’t worry about it. There will be plenty of time for him to wear it if it arrives 10 days after his birthday..

    Relax and have fun!

    • Exactly what I was thinking.. Either this or the bra… but, I’m sure there are bras available for purchase in Madrona too. Can’t wait to see what you select

  12. If you can give Lou something smaller on his birthday, and do the sweater when you get home, he’ll be happy for 2 gifts and you’ll give yourself room to breathe. And the socks are beautiful, the brightness is better in the drearier weather.

  13. Enjoy your weekend, knit when you can and know that Lou loves you and will forgive you being a day or two late with the sweater if that happens.

  14. You’ve got this. The sweaters at age 2 are tiny… not a problem. You’re surrounded by other knitters – so throw them a sleeve or two to help you out and you’ll be fine…

  15. Little Lou-Who could celebrate his second year with a a double present- something that comes in twos, or has two sides. I’m thinking mittens, or slippers, or socks, or a double knitted hat. Definitely all possible to finish on a plane trip home.

  16. If you can’t come back from this, I don’t know who can.

    I hate– with loathing and detestation– that horrible, pernicious (have I gotten my dislike across yet?) feeling of having forgotten something.

    And I ALWAYS seem to have it when travelling. Argh.

    Have fun at Madrona, and at least you know what it was now! And think about the happy part: Lou is turning 2!

  17. Little Lou Who is not quite yet two – he doesn’t know from birthdays yet! So buy him a book (you know you would, anyway) and then start the sweater. He’ll be fine, and so will you.

  18. Now, I thought it was going to be your passport! You can always get yarn. Time to knit, maybe not, but always yarn.
    Glad you had the passport, though!

  19. Lol! Be glad that all you have forgotten is a Lil’ Lou sweater! Reading your blog, I am amazed at how quickly you knit. Don’t even sweat it, girl. You’ll get it done. 🙂

  20. Oh, you’ve totally got this! I can’t wait to see the pictures!
    Welcome to wordpress, by the way, the blog looks great. (I use wordpress too and find it relatively straightforward, well, mostly!)
    But how do I subscribe???

  21. Lol, you are so funny! I do that all the time. It will all be okay, I promise. Have fun! Now if you had forgotten your meds, well… that coulda gotten pretty ugly in a hurry, you know?

  22. whew! That’s a snap! You’ve got all that return flight time to whip up one small sweater! 😉 PS: your human-not-a-spammer test (drag and drop the icon) amuses me greatly. LOL!

  23. Lou is thankfully still small and relatively unfussy when it comes to hand knits…. that’ll come later when he becomes a teenager and wants you to knit a sweater you’ve never made in a yarn that makes your skin crawl and naturally it’ll be in black…. which requires you to lock the cats out of the room (which doesn’t work for too long as they’re annoying, persistent, and can open doors on their own), only work in bright sunlight (which also results in a sunburn) and then have the audacity to hit a growth spurt right as you’re getting ready to finish the sweater so it’ll be too wide and too short or too long and too narrow….. and fit him like a second skin…

    So a sweater for a two year old? You’ve totally got this 🙂

  24. Good luck with the sweater. Think of it as your own version of Olympic knitting. Bobsled!! Luge!! Skeleton!! Moguls(but only if there are bobbles in the sweater).

  25. Right! You got this.

    In our family when someone had that nagging feeling, the response was, “Don’t worry. You ether won’t need it or you can buy it when you get there.” And it is (almost) always totally true. (The “almost” is for the time that the gift recipient is picking you up at the airport.)

  26. Little Lou
    Who will be two
    Would probably like a picture book
    With cheery pictures at which he could look.
    Then later, the Blog would surmise
    You could knit him a new sweater as a surprise.
    Little Lou who is almost two
    Still has a lot of growing to do.

  27. Take a deep breath.

    This one is totally under control. Madrona has yarn, needles, stitch markers, etc. You’ve got your laptop, so you can find a pattern on Ravelry or elsewhere on the net. You can probably beg use of a printer for one or two pages, or pay the hotel a small fee to print the pattern. You knit like the wind, and Lou isn’t THAT big yet. If you’re a day or two late, tell him you were waiting for the cat to finish her contribution to it — he’ll never know.

    Now consider this: If you screwed up Sam’s b-day gift, you’d really be in hot water. Especially if it were a hand-knit sweater!

  28. Can I just go on the record that I’m glad it wasn’t your plane knitting and the no one had to die because of it? I don’t actually know you, but I’ve had nightmares that involved running into you without your knitting 🙂

  29. hmm, well, there is a GREAT kid’s sweater that can have cables added, or odd bits of designs, and extra stuff around the neck or a shawl collar with short rows. AND, the sweater is perfect, just as it is…The Daisy Sweater. Knits up fast and is a solid logical pattern 🙂 Glad it popped into your brain.

  30. Oh bugger! But at least you’ve figured out what it was, and as others have commented already, a toddler sweater isn’t that big so I’m sure you’ll manage it – just try not to make the pattern anything too complex so it knits up fast xx

  31. It’s nice to know that I’m not the only one whose family crowded too many birthdays into the beginning of the year!

    And for Lou’s sweater? Two words: chunky yarn! 🙂

  32. As everyone has said, we knew it was yarn for something, and you totally can knock out that sweater on the trip home. I like the idea, too, of letting the participants knit a row, if it’s not too complicated a pattern. I’m surprised no on has asked yet — when is your next book coming out. You said you finished a couple of months ago. Do you have a title yet? Spill.

  33. If time is tight, just remember how fast a 2 year old’s arms grow, and knit a VEST. So many cute patterns, and it will last him a good while.

  34. One good thing about little kids, they like presents no matter when they get them. I think we all do. So for his birthday, get him a book, a game, a Lego set. And then give Lou the sweater as a “Hurrah! It’s Tuesday!” present.

  35. Thank goodness for the flight back, and for goodness sake, a pullover, right? Or a vest?
    Enjoy yourself, you’ve got it and you have two birthdays to celebrate when you get back.

  36. Whew, I can relate, sooo well! Of course there will be yarn, beeyoutiful yarn and you will make something fab.
    Cannot wait to see the pictures!!!

  37. The way this winter is going up here in the Northeast US, and Canada, he could probably use a hat and mitts, with a sweater to follow. He can always wear a coat but there is only one way to cover his head……..

  38. Wow, what a surprise it would be to…dare I say it…BUY a gift?????

    Cut yourself some slack, woman. You just got back from a mind melting trip to Mexico, and have classes to teach a couple of days later….

    In the scheme of things, the two year old won’t know the difference…

  39. Sad thing : no matter what I try, your blog is not showing up on my feed (bloglovin). I have been following you for a while and missed the “move” post I think, and now I can’t make it show up in my feed. Any idea why (might have been said before but so many comments! ;D)

    Hope you are enjoying your trip! We don’t have snow/cold but non-stop rain (lousy Winter) and I could use some warmth and sun …

  40. And we circle back to the ‘rule’ that your knitting always always ALWAYS gets packed first…. Harlot, sigh, haven’t we been through this already??? xoxo

  41. I know this is off subject, but how does one, who is not as computer literate as I am knitting literate, get your avatar loaded up?

    I think everyone is right, Lou will be delighted with a fun hat or mittens. How about those dragon or lizard ones you did one Christmas? Or a really fun earflap / chullo with chunky & colorful yarn? Or slippers and a book. Whatever you give him,I can already see his cute little grin.

  42. I don’t know if it’s just me, but my RSS reader (Feedly) doesn’t show any new posts from here since January 29. I was wondering where you went, and here I see a bunch of new things!

  43. The main thing is, that Sam is covered. Lou is unlikely to care about a specific date, really. So if Lou gets a beautiful book and a sweater sleeve for his birthday, he will be happy. and you can finish the other bits a day or so later.

  44. I just had to try the captcha thing – love it!

    Sam seems lost in the deluge of notes for little Lou and I think she’s the one who might notice a belated birthday gift – all the while totally understanding how it happened. When you figure out the whole ‘knitting with your mind’ thing, you have a boatload of customers already lined up!

  45. I hate that “I did it but only in my mind” thing. Like thinking you’ve paid the bills, or packed a thing, or all but made dinner. Not that I’d know about any of these.

  46. Love all the reassurances that you needn’t knit for Lou. Yep, surrounded by yarn at Madrona, with a clear mandate and a long plane ride, it’s good to know you don’t have to bother with that nassy ol’ knitting. My money says you buy two different colorways, because it’s a long time till the next Madrona and it would be a false economy not to get anything good that you see there…

    • Well, considering that Lou’s primary interests are putting things down the vent and saying hi to birds, I’d say it’s more about his parents and the celebration they’ve got planned, but on the other hand, I never claimed to be sane.

  47. Little Lou
    Is only Two
    He has so very much to do

    He won’t regret
    the sweater yet
    to come from Auntie Steph

    He won’t be sad
    He’ll just be glad
    To see it when it comes

  48. Don’t ya’ll know by now that the Harlot doesn’t take knitting (or other) suggestions that could make her life easier. She WILL knit a sweater for Lou’s Birthday, and in the time allowed. Not a hat, not a vest, not anything but a sweater. Count on it. That’s just the way she’s wired. 🙂

  49. I was reading along trying to figure out with you what is might have been that you forgot. Then I got to the end of your post and had a great laugh. If anyone can do it, you can. Thanks!

  50. You are all Canadian… knit the lad a hat and mittens, from the look of the weather he’ll need them!

    (I’m in UK, how do I knit waders?)

  51. Don’t feel bad, I’m still working in my 8yo nephews Christmas sweater. And bless his little heart he keeps telling me he doesn’t care how long it takes, or if it’s dorky. It’s aunt bobbies first sweater and he’s gonna wear it!

  52. 1 Lou is 2 not 20…not much yarn required
    2 There will be no shortage of yarn in Madrona
    3 Buy 2 extra skeins you dont have time to drive to Niagara Falls for a Ravelry rescue
    4 It takes a village. ..you will be in a village of knitters. “Have a go at a row for$__”. You can make the creation of Lou’s sweater a fundraising event for your favorite charity.
    It will be the gift that keeps giving and takes the pressure off Lou’s mom to keep having children for harlot hewn handmedowns.
    5 Hand over the needles yarn and pattern. ..have some wine.
    6 The sweater will be done before you leave.
    7 You can make another one on the plane home if you miss the adrenaline rush of the gottamakeasweaterin10minutesdeadline.
    8 Really have some more wine

  53. I was beginning to worry about you or think you had disappeared for a couple weeks, which you sort of did. Apparently since you changed formats my Feedly account did not make the switch so no updates. Finally my non-techy mind clicked and I searched you out and there you have been this whole time. I guess I better straighten things out with Feedly now. Love the bright socks.

  54. Glad I’ve found your new blog! I’ve been missing your posts. I was using Feedly to read them and missed the”I have moved” notice until I went directly to your website. The bright side is now I have 7 new posts to read all at once! Hope there aren’t too many readers who have lost you like I did…

  55. Monday has come and gone, birthdays have been celebrated, and now we all await with baited breath the answer to our question. Did she finish? I’m leaning towards ‘yes’, because you are the Harlot after all. But there could have been a catastrophe, or last minute change of plans, or a mugging on the way home from the airport (take the wallet, but leave the yarn, please). The blog needs to know!

  56. Ugh – that’s the worst feeling in the world. Knowing but not knowing. I’m catching up on your posts and haven’t read any updates yet, but you definitely got this. Even if it’s and on-the-needles gift to finish very soon after….?

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