Monthly Musings: 2022… January Catch-Up

2022: January Catch-Up…

Did you make New Years resolutions this year? I try not to… as then there are no worries in keeping them. But, in the back of my mind, I hope to work more on creating junk journals… as I have accumulated way too much “junk” stuff! How did this get out of hand? Well, one reason is… I’m a big saver! My plan is to use up much of this “stuff”, so I’ve begun watching several videos for new ideas while knitting. One of my new You Tuber’s is Natasha on “Treasure Books“… love her accent! The link I posted is of her binding a journal using empty pen barrels… I found it very interesting and I immediately began searching my drawers for a clear pen barrel… finding none! I have saved so many treasures to “one day” add to my personal journals I want to create… for Nancy Drew, travel and personal one.

I have journaled for years and have several hiding away in my bureau. My daughter laid claim to them years ago, hope she doesn’t find them boring, as I think I journaled more on our Georgia trips to mom’s house… all about our daily travels. Maybe I need to re-read them! She’s also laid claim to her father and my “love letters” written before we married, and while stationed in Thailand after we married. I definitely should reread those! In as most of my journals are in cursive… the granddaughters will need to bone up their reading skills if they ever want to read! I loved learning to write in cursive… how could they not teach that skill in school… and yes it’s a skill!

As I recorded way too many Christmas movies during December, I’ve carried over my watching into this month while crafting… just for noise in the room. Don’t they generally all seem to end “happily ever after”…. do you watch? A few years ago, Hallmark filmed The Reindeer Lodge across the street from my daughter’s house. My granddaughters were in awe of the filming so close to them… and enjoyed watching the changes to the house and area on a daily pattern. As there was no snow on the ground during the filming, they enjoyed seeing the snow created for the scenes; often watching from the upstairs window… especially enjoying the horse and carriage scenes on the street. My daughter walked over once with them to stand on the side for a closer view… but it was never close enough for them.

We stayed home mostly this month due to the Covid/Omicron wave that hit Connecticut. I began cleaning out drawers… when the mood hit me. I try and clean out yearly a small 4-drawer cabinet in our bedroom that I use for a later filing of anything for saving, or photos I’ve pulled out during the year. I also began making a box for both of my kids… of things I’ve saved for them. Hope they don’t toss… if you do, just please don’t tell me… as I saved these things for you for a long time. I try and tell them… even if you don’t want at this moment in time… file them away as a time capsule, as much later you will look at them differently, and your children will enjoy looking through them when they are older. I still remember things I threw away when I was young… and I’ve never stopped regretting it. I remember my mother telling me how she was saving many antiques in our house for me… and I’d quickly respond as a teenager… “don’t save these things for me, I want modern things.” Boy am I glad she didn’t listen!

Another WIP finished… I began these fingerless mittens for the granddaughters in Florida last year… and yes they do have cold days. Just this past week, they had extremely cold mornings in the 30’s… so hopefully these arrive in time to allow use before packing away for another day. It always feels good to complete another WIP… work in progress!

Girls have received the mittens and chosen their favorite colors! I’m sure they headed to school this morning wearing them as temps were chilly in the high 40’s… maybe I should have added finger coverings… but who knew Florida was getting so cold this year!!!

If you’re still wondering what UFO and WIP means in knitting or crafting… “Unfinished Object” and “Work in Progress”

If you knit… do you have UFO’s or WIP’s lingering in drawers or baskets… often hiding the very knitting needles you’re been searching for… in beginning a new project. I can now cross these off my WIP list! Last year I made one full pair, and one of the second pair, but when I picked them back up… for the life of me… I was stumped in how to make the matching pair… as my pattern did not actually have the thumb listed on the pattern; it was supposed to have been seamed up on the side… only leaving an open area for the thumb. There was also another pattern folded up in bag, so it took me a bit to re-create what I had originally knitted. I constantly mix up patterns when I knit… changing them to magic loop, or in this case, adding a thumb from the second pattern. After muttering for awhile, I laid them down saying “that’s it, I can’t figure out what I did.” Hubby quickly said, “you’ll get it, you always figure out everything.” After a few days, I picked it back up and gave it another shot. I knew in the back of my mind, I wouldn’t quit, as I don’t let anything get the best of me.

Upon finishing the mittens… I pulled out this WIP of socks I began last year for the girls… but then became sidetracked! I’m like a little fish… dangle something new in front of me… and I’m off and running in another direction. I chose to knit these socks using magic loop… so two pairs would be completed at the same time. Let’s hope I finish before winter ends!

Near the end of December I fell back in love with Nutcrackers after seeing my daughter’s display of them. Many were mine from years ago… of which I’d actually forgotten I’d even had. I came across several at an estate sale and purchased for her… then later found another one that needed a little TLC… of which I brought home with me. Guess I’ll be adding “nutcrackers” to my search list at future estate sales.

Do you collect Nutcrackers?

On Fox & Friends, they attempted to crack nuts with “decorative” Nutcrackers in trying to prove whether they are functionable or only decorative… never for cracking! It had me remembering all the pecans mama sent me over the years… bags and bags of pecans. She would sit outside and crack them with a brick… then bring inside for picking the meat out. And I’m sure she sat in bed to pick out those nuts… as mama sat in the bed to do everything… from cutting her hair, to sewing lace and beads on her pants. Sitting on the couch was never her cup of tea! Every time I bake pecans today, I always think of my mother… so missing her. Life is too short!

January has also brought me back to thinking of my “want” of a spinning wheel… after a Facebook meme post asked… “what have you always wanted to do, but haven’t!” I reposted the meme on my page and wrote how I’ve always wanted a spinning wheel. It was quite interesting to see my friends list of wants… and a gracious friend has offered me one of her wheels she once displayed in her home. I’m anxious to bring the wheel home from Georgia this year and check it out; I’ll keep you posted! I’m now back to researching various wheels and learning the names of the many spinning component’s, and how they all interact. I find the more you know before you buy into a new “hobby”… is extremely beneficial.

If you spin… I’d enjoy hearing from you and your thoughts on a first spinning wheel. I’m hoping to not want/need a second one, but in the many videos I’ve watched… most have more than one. Sounds like an addicting hobby!

With all the super cold temps in Florida… I added a quick knitting project over this snowy weekend on the last of January… knitting fun-fur cowls for the girls… even included one for my daughter in law… for her early-morning chicken feedings. Mailed them out this morning, so hope they arrive in time to use for a few days. I definitely didn’t prolong this knitting project into a WIP… it was a knitting frenzy all weekend! (Over 9-inches of snow fell on Friday here in CT.)

I hope January has been healthy for you and your family… we have experienced a cold winter so far, so I’m already dreaming of warmer days at the beach. Even though I can’t drag a spinning wheel there… I can bring my knitting needles!


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About Jeanne Bryan Insalaco

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