Why isn’t there a guardrail on this thing

My sister Erin is getting married on Saturday, and just back from two back to back trips, with a bike rally meeting looming in front of me, and all the things I have to do before the big day making a very, very long list… I think I might just go over the edge on this one.

Everything seemed so doable in Colorado.  When I was at The Loopy Ewe’s Spring Fling, I took pictures of the people I talked too (There were a lot of them) and I was light hearted and at ease.

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The wedding seemed far away. All I needed was a dress – and I had so much time, so I just enjoyed the ride.

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I met Claudia from Wollmeise, although that picture is going to be no help identifying her in public (which I think was the goal) my fellow teachers were charming, the students very clever, and the trip, spectacular in general.  I’m so grateful to Sheri for inviting me.

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(That’s a super blurry picture of me, Ann Budd, Marly Bird and Susan B Anderson. It was at the end of a day of teaching, so I don’t think the problem was with the camera. I think we were all blurry.)

Then I came home, and I only had two days at home and all I had time to do was go to a bike rally meeting and wash my clothes (I literally took them out of my suitcase and put them back in again) and as I left for The Arkansas Fiber Arts Extravaganza, I was starting to feel just a little bit of anxiety.  Just a little voice in the back of my mind that said “Hey, McPhee.  You might want to start thinking about that wedding a bit.”

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I told it to screw off, and I played with the knitters.

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By Saturday, I could feel a knot of concern attempting to wiggle it’s way up into a place where I’d do something about it – but I still didn’t feel like it was a really big deal, so I played with those knitters too, and I took pictures of an ADORABLE baby dressed up as a Cabbage Patch Doll.  (Can you even stand that baby? So cute it hurts. I can’t believe we’re legally allowed to dress them up as anything we want. Fabulous.)

By Sunday, the Extravaganza was over, and it had been fabulous,  and I had a few hours before it was time to leave for the airport, and I drank a cup of coffee, and I thought to myself – Steph, what is that feeling in the pit of your stomach.  Is that pressure? Should I be worrying about this wedding? I spent a few minutes thinking about what I had to do, but I’m an experienced procrastinator, and so it only took me a few minutes to decide that what I should really be doing was walking into Hot Springs to see the Springs and the old Bathhouses. So that’s what I did.

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(By the way: Confirmed. Springs in Hot Springs actually hot. Steaming hot water coming right out of the ground. Extremely cool.)

I knit all the way home, and that night I felt that little tap on my shoulder that is my better self trying to keep me on track, but I had a glass of wine and a little knit, and went off to bed.  The next morning though, I didn’t look away when it was time, and the slight concern I had about getting a dress only took two minutes to be converted into full fledged panic as the to-do list mounted.  I needed a dress. I needed shoes. I needed a lipstick. (I thought there was one here somewhere, but there isn’t, and I’ve been informed by my indomitable mother that I will be wearing lipstick to this event, and frankly, she had a look on her face that I don’t argue with. Even at 46 years of age, I know when I have to comply with my mother, and lipstick isn’t the hill I want to die on. I’ll get one.)

I need to write a toast (everything I write is suddenly not funny. Or inappropriate. Or might be rude.  I can’t tell. By the time I’m done worrying about it all I have is a speech that says “My sister Erin is awesome and congratulations.” I know she was hoping for more. I’ll keep trying.) Mum and I are hosting the Friday evening dinner (crap I’m out of balsamic. I’ll have to get some) and I haven’t checked in with the girls to see if they need maternal support in the shoes/dress department, although truthfully, other than infusions of cash they usually do better than I do.  There’s more, oh, so much more, and all of that is smashed in with cleaning the house for guests, and taking (what rather seems like a lot of) phone calls from my sister, and going to work and there’s totally another Bike Rally meeting tonight and I’m going to lose it. I can feel it. I don’t even know what losing it looks like in this case, but I’m going to slip right over the edge any minute.

Yesterday Mum and I went out and got a dress, so that’s done, and I love it, or I love it as much as it is possible for someone  as hopelessly informal as I am to love formal wear. We went to about five stores, it took three hours and it’s out of the way.  (By the way, did you know that apparently you wear special underwear when you go dress shopping? I didn’t know, but my mum and I had this text conversation, so apparently it’s true.)

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(Also, there’s a chance that conversation disappointed my mother.)

This morning I was at the closest shoe store when it opened, and 20 minutes later I had shoes all bought and paid for. (They’re a little tight. The shopgirl said that was good – because they’ll totally loosen up, but I don’t know. They’re no birkenstocks, that’s for sure.)

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For the rest of today I’m going to clean the house so that someone can stay here without reporting us to that TV show… you know the one.  I think it’s called “Hoarders” – and I’m going to start writing a toast in my head while I do that. Also, I’m going to wear my new shoes while I clean, so that they “loosen up” the way the girl seems confident they will. My Mum is dropping by to critique the shoes and pick up some celery (she’s having a celery crisis that I’ve decided not to question, but merely fork over the greens for) and I’m expecting to take several phone calls from my sister during which I will say only reassuring things, regardless of whether or not I believe them to be true, while not allowing any words to come out of my mouth that imply for even a second that my to-do list is anything but AWESOME because I know hers is longer.

Then I’ll go to my meeting, where I’ll pretend none of this is a strain at all, and act exactly like someone who would never, ever procrastinate like this, and has all the time in the world.  (I’m typing up my meeting notes some time before the meeting, I’ll figure out when that will be after I post this) and then when I get home I’ll make a plan for tomorrow that will include hemming my dress, doing something about my hair (no way to know if that can be helped) my nails (I broke one. Can they fix that?) and shopping for all the cooking on Friday.

It’s going to be cool.  Right? I don’t even have to warp the time-space continuum.  Maybe just bend it.  It’s going to be cool.  I’ve got this.


(PS. The yarn from the pictures on Monday is from Must Stash and is in the colourway “Dark Side of the Moon.” That’s a link that should take you right there, if you’re dying for it, she’s dyeing for it.)

(PPS. The Buffalo Wool Company (I’m a fan) is a finalist in the “American Made” contest. That’s a link that should take you right there if you’re so inclined as to vote for them. I bet they’d like that, and they’re nice people who make good yarn.)