Winter’s Mood Swings

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As days and nights revolve around weather, with apocalyptic wrath, the frozen skies repeatedly opened, dropping 3 feet of snow on my nest. Winter’s mood swings erupted – first, angling in with a warming nudge, and then in a full hot rage – rain, thunder, fog – leaving us waterlogged.

I’m one of those snow lovers. It’s an accumulated love. The more, the merrier. Even if you despise the chilly season, you’ve got to admit you’re waiting for the weather to equalize to some sort of normalcy. I know from many reliable sources, if you’re barking up that tree, you’ll end up mighty hoarse.

Young snowboarder, Forrest Shearer,  sums up it up:

“The winter season is a magical time, my favorite of the year. The peaks and hills get covered in a fresh coat of white providing a palate for all of us artists to use our mind and imagination to draw our own lines on the mountains. But it won’t be here forever if we don’t all take some time to protect it.”

I long to sprinkle a little seasoning on the moody blues of our changing climate. So I spent last month worshiping winter. Here’s a peek into 3 questions I asked:

  1. How well do you know snow?
  2. Why did NY Fashion Week visitors trade in stilettos for Sorels?
  3. Do the winter Olympics even have a future in a warming world?  

With spring waiting in the wings, at the cost of sounding shrill, let’s not forget WE MUST PROTECT WINTER.

Resolution

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Card: Sapling Press via Design Milk

Crafting A Legacy

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Snuggled in our respective nests, my family drifts into maker-mode. Daughter is throwing pots. Son is woodworking. Husband‘s shooting up a storm with his camera. And of course, my needles are clicking.

Although we’re merrily crafting a blizzard of goodies, curiously, we never seem to remember it all takes an enormous amount of time to complete these energetic handmade gifts. I predict there may be more than a few IOU’s.

As an experienced knitter, I look for a challenge this time of year to add to my crafting legacy. I do not crochet. Not because I can’t (mom taught me). It’s because of a long-standing attitude that knitting is more beautiful than crochet.

Don’t start throwing hooks at me yet.

When I started knitting, granny square afghans lit up the craft world. Granny…Afghan…SO not cool. Gorgeous Crochet Snowflakes…SO cool.

I’ve changed my tune and want to share with non-knitters — who have no idea what I’m talking about — the difference between knitting and crocheting:

Knit and crochet are distinctly different crafts with different tools that work up various stitches. Knitting is done on needles — straight, double pointed or circular. Crochet uses hooks of varying sizes. Straight knitting looks like a bunch of interlocking “v”stitches. Crochet stitches are “chains” — crochet hook gets inserted into a stitch and yarn is looped. Knitting tends to be tight. Crochet is looser, more open weave. I’m told crocheting is quick (not so much for me), while knitted garments take many, many hours to complete.

Wrapping, twisting, cabling, chaining, braiding…who cares? Inspired by these gorgeous snowflakes, momentarily, I put down my needles and pick up a hook.

In the maker spirit, here’s a round-up of my 3 favorite crocheted snowflakes:

Frosty Filigree Snowflake from Martha Stewart

Rustic Twine Snowflake from Aesthetic Nest

Beaded Snowflake from AgaKnickKnack

What’s your craft legacy?

Photo via flickr

Memory Of The Heart

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Nothing — to answer the question above.

I am lucky. 

“Wonderful things happen when your brain is empty,” says artist Maira Kalman.

Today I spent the day emptying. Pausing at work’s door to let in the arrival of my children.

In a quiet moment, I read that the French call gratitude, “the memory of the heart.

Makes perfect sense.

My heart skips a beat with abundant reminders — memories of the heart.

With sincere gratitude,

I am lucky.

Drawing: Maira Kalman via Brain Pickings

Adapt, Meddle, Adjust

When Dorothy clicked her ruby red slippers and said, “There’s no place like home,” she longed for the place that held all her favorite things, favorite people – her world.

So how do you create a home?

This New York Times house tour of the home of interior designer, assemblage artist (!), Faye Toogood answers:

“I like to combine the precious and the raw,” Organic tinkering comes out her need to “adapt, meddle or adjust” the objects in her home.

All that attentive rearranging is well composed – neither minimalist nor overdone. “I love things that are really old but look modern.” Home.