december sixth

Today was the first major snowstorm of the season; we’ve had nearly 9″ of snow just in the last eight hours. I forget how much snow slows things down; I forget to allow for Snow Time when planning my day. Snow Time means you have to set aside ten extra minutes before walking the dog for getting on Warm Things, finding the other mitten, lacing up your snow boots, clearing the stairs, and ten minutes afterwards for taking all the stuff off, hanging it up, and wiping down one’s snow-delighted pooch.

It also means setting aside a couple hours of one’s day for Shoveling. I’ve shoveled twice today; it’s easier on one’s body to do 4 inches of fluffy snow twice than to do 8 inches of any snow once. (I learned this the hard way my first winter here.)

All that Snow Time means I almost didn’t get today’s post written. However, I am determined not to let winter win…


I just want you to know that I do read all your comments, sometimes more than once. One of the comments to yesterday’s entry was especially pointed: “Set up your damn studio and let me live vicariously through you. My vicarious joy is now your report card. :)

Thanks, Kat…loved that. It really woke me up when you said that it was a bit painful to read about how I had the time and the luxury of being able to craft, and yet was not doing so. That was something I needed to hear. And not because, “Oh, I’m making Kat upset, I’d better pull it together for her” but because of what I believe about the gifts we are all given.

Everyone’s been given something. Some of you have been given the ability to have children; some of you have been given the ability to work with complex computing environments, some of you can code, some of you can sew, some of you can sing, or dance, or paint, or decorate a home so it is both beautiful and comfortable (those of you in the latter category, please feel free to come on over, anytime). Me, I’ve been given a lot of things: Creativity, skill with writing, an adorable and supportive husband, time, and so forth.

See where the lace is on the table? That's my laptop; that's where I sit and write every day

What I believe is that the gifts we have been given aren’t meant to be hoarded; they are meant to be shared. I wasn’t given this gift of writing just so I could go off into a corner by myself and write secret journal entries to my fairy godmother. I’ve known since I was ten years old that I was meant to write Things Other People Would Read. I’ve spent a lot of years not knowing what I was supposed to write about; there are days when I still question this, feeling as though within me there’s still a particular story I haven’t told yet, a book I haven’t imagined yet.

But I do know that I’m meant to write, and that I’m meant to write for you. So if I don’t write, then in a way, I’m being selfish, because the stuff I write, in some way that I haven’t really figured out yet, is For Other Folks, as well as for myself.

And throughout my life, it has been the act of Making that keeps my little writer’s bucket full of Good, full of Energy, full of Depth and Passion and all the strong things that a writer needs to face the empty screen each day. So if I don’t craft, if I don’t set aside time to Make and Create, then my bucket runs dry…and I don’t have anything left to give to my community.

I’m still kind of avoiding the fact that What I Make is in and of itself valuable. My craft isn’t just something to fill up my bucket, it also fills up YOUR buckets in ways that I don’t fully understand. There’s something here, something in Craft, something in the Making, that weaves in and around us, tying us together in a wild unseen tapestry, a tapestry that brings more life, more energy, more joy, and more passion as the weft dances around and around the warp of Making.


I just remembered something. Back when I first learned how to spin, my boyfriend at the time surprised me by buying me an Ashford Elizabeth spinning wheel. This being a pretty pricey gift, I protested and argued with him, but he insisted. As we left the spinning shop with the wheel, he let it slip that his parents had also contributed money towards this amazing gift. When I asked him why they were all doing this for me, he answered, “Because the world will be a better place if you have a spinning wheel, and enjoying spinning on it.”

Crafting makes the world a better place. We are richer for doing it. I have more resources to Make and Create than some do, plus I have the talent to write with passion and humour so that others can share in the joy of making with me. Both crafting and writing are ways in which I contribute to the health of our community. This remains true even if I don’t understand how it all works.

I think I’d better get on with setting up my damn studio, then.

Today’s Random Good

If you have not discovered Allie’s blog, then do yourself a HUGE favour and click here. Allie is one of my favourite bloggers; her writing is delightful, but it is her stick-figure illustrations which make her stories as funny as anything I’ve ever read.  (The post on moving with dogs had my CRYING with laughter, because Been There, Had That Animal Only It Was A Cat.)

Give yourself time to click on each of her Best Of stories on the right side. Don’t be drinking anything hot or sticky when you do, though. Keyboards are hard to clean.

About sandi

Knitter. Spinner. Quilter. UFO Wrangler. Sometime bead artist and weaver. Two toddler-age kittens, 1 permakitten, 2 grownup cats, 1 beloved dog angel, 1 spouse, 1 crazy life. I suppose that the 5 cats make me 1 crazy cat lady; OTOH, apparently, yes, I do need that much feline supervision.
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13 Responses to december sixth

  1. Lynn says:

    Oh, God, now my tummy hurts, really hurts, from laughing so hard at that blog! And now I have to go be a Grown-Up at a Planning Board meeting. Bad Sandi. Bad, bad Sandi! (tee-hee)

  2. Sandi, your words contain humor as well as wisdom. I really must start using my room. Granted, it is cool in there today and I could use that radiator in your pic, but the only thing stopping me is me!!!

  3. Mardi says:

    Sweet puppy, Olaf sends licks and sniffs. And wishes he could play in the snow with you! We have about 4 inches now, and still coming down.

    I’m great at interior design. I wish I were nearer, I would love to help you. I don’t think I’m great ( sound familiar?) but everyone who has ever been in my homes has said how warm and welcoming and cultured and interesting they are. I even made a cozy loft.

  4. Gwen says:

    What a fabulous reason for that great gift!

    Another thing – You already know how important it is to Take Care Of and Care For yourself. The time and space to craft is part of the time and space of caring for yourself. As far as I can tell, from this side of my computer. (and it’s so easy to say that to care for others, we have to care for ourselves first. which is true. but caring for ourselves is an important goal in itself)

  5. naomi says:

    I love the boxcat photo.

  6. Rachel says:

    one of the hardest things I had to learn was that I, like EVERYONE, had a talent. Took me a very long time to realize what it was and even longer to value it (there are days still, when I don’t but I’m working on it).

    your talent is writing and crafting and engaging others in the process. So give the dog a belly rub for me and skritch the cat then set up the studio so you can do what do you best,

  7. Ann Williams says:

    So enjoy your post. Has Sir N had his haircut?? Snowing here in North Carolina too. Not enough to shovel, thank goodness.

  8. Lisa says:

    Oh, hey!! Those cats are in a Priority Mail box because they’re being sent to my house, right?? (I’d love to have another cat, but The Husband says no. Give them chin skritches for me!)

  9. Karen says:

    Loved your post….I will no longer feel guilty about putting aside house hold chores to craft!

  10. Bonnie says:

    One of the reasons I appreciate your writing is that it makes me feel less alone. None of my friends nor family is a obsessed with yarn as I am, and it makes me feel good to get to know people through their blogs who feel as I do. Crafting isn’t something that’s widely appreciated in this culture, but I feel that I have a supportive community through the internet (and the friends who like to receive handknits as presents!) I bet there are a lot of readers who feel the same way. Please write for us.

  11. Natalie says:

    Thank you for sending me to Allie’s blog. I’m still wiping away the tears & I’ve passed on the link so that my friends can also laugh until they cry.

  12. cocokat says:

    I have enjoyed your writing from Knitting Daily and now on this blog. It gives me encouragement and enables me to laugh about my knitting (crochet/cross-stitch) escapades. I’m an also fortunate to have a supportive husband that tells me to go ahead and buy the expensive (!) yarn.

    Crafting brings us all joy and sharing it brings us more joy. So you are obligated to share the joy.

    Love the pic with the cats in the box. My new kitty (through 14-15 years old) hasn’t had a box to play in yet. But should soon as I am expecting an order of yarn!!

  13. Patricia says:

    Your writing is truly delightful to read. I look forward to your blogs and your weekly Knitting Daily blog. Your ability to express humor, joy, instructions, etc is a true talent. Have you and Stephanie talked about a joint book of essays?

    I have also been blessed with an understanding husband who doesn’t care how much I spend on yarn, books, etc. and encourages me to take classes. He even expresses interest in what I’m knitting, measured me for your KAL (several times, as the instructions changed!), and made me a table top swift, and a couple of yarn holders so the wound yarn wouldn’t twist as it unrolled from the balls. (He’s a talented crafter in wood, as well as in computer software, so he gets the concept of creating.)

    Give yourself more space to work/play/write in…you are worthy of it.

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