Monday, February 29, 2016

Tunisian Crochet

Tunisian Crochet is the marriage between knitting and crochet. Among the many differences between the two forms is the fact that in knitting you use two needles to work with multiple loops while in crochet you use one hook and one loop. In tunisian crochet you use one hook to work with multiple loops.

In crochet, you have an assortment of basic stitches including the slip stitch, single crochet, double crochet, and treble crochet. While in knitting you have two basic stitches: knit and purl. In tunisian crochet you can basically do them ALL. So, hey, want to do some tunisian crochet? I highly recommend you learn some basic crochet before beginning. My all time favorite crochet person on Youtube is CrochetGeek. Check her out, get some crochet done.


The Tunisian Crochet Knit Stitch

Then venture out into tunisian crochet. She has some awesome videos but I want to recommend you look into the tunisian simple stitch, tunisian knit stitch, and tunisian purl stitch. Get really familiar with it then come back.

Now chain 25 stitches. We’re going to make a dishcloth because no home is complete without a handmade dishcloth. Your dishes are going to look so sparkly dried. Or you can be like me and use them to dust EVERYTHING.

You will be doing one row of tunisian simple stitch. Then break it up a bit, two rows of tunisian purl stitch. Five rows of tunisian knit stitch. Back to town with a row of simple. Two purl. Five knit. Keep up the pattern: 1 simple, 2 purl, 5 knit. Then stop when your dishcloth has reached a sort of rectangle appearance. By this point you’ll have one loop left on your hook. You can finish this two ways you can:

1) Chain two and cut.
2) Make a nice edging on your square. Join the edging together, chain two and cut!

You’re chaining two to really make a solid knot after you pull the tail through the loop (pull like you mean it). You don’t want this to unravel on you or anyone and you generally want to weave in your ends. I really like tunisian crochet right now, and wanted you to experience it too. Let me know if you get started.

Thursday, February 25, 2016

Without Wings

Ever wonder about the expression “the weight of the world on our shoulders” or “the yoke of the Lord?” Granted, the second expression is not always as popular as the first, but they’re about the same thing: responsibility.

In the most rudimentary term of our existence, we as individuals are responsible for our well being. No one is going to make sure you wake up in time for breakfast, or catch the bus into town, get a job. Pay for your food. Really, not even your parents are responsible after a certain points. We’re individual creatures, we make our own choices.

At times we make choices that last a few hours, that slip and slide with the movement of the sun, and some last a lifetime. However, because WE ARE individuals living as a single cells in this multicellular organism that is our world and universe--our actions affect everybody. As persons, we’re asked to make better decisions for ourselves that won’t harm us because believe it or not, our choices will influence our surroundings.

That’s the responsibility of world on our shoulders. We can’t do everything we want whenever we want. Because we have to be responsible and do what we want which won’t mess with the well being of others. That adds extra pressure on our shoulder blades where we carry the weight of our responsibility.

When the burden of the world becomes too much work or too heavy I like to remember an old story. It’s a story about how when we were little angels in God’s big heaven we had wings on our shoulder blades. With the addition of wings, we were much lighter and our burdens were much easier to carry.

But we are without wings now. And some days it’s a chore to even stay awake when the sun’s rays push upon our faces like finger tips.

Saturday, February 20, 2016

The Naming Convention

We get out of hands sometimes. We being my friends and I (and any innocent bystander in our conversations). It’s as if in the heat of things we come up with the most exotic topics to add laughter to our conversation. Little things like show and tell become “look at this ever so lightweight wool yarn” or “I found the widest acrylic yarn ever.” “Did you know that Walgreen’s has activity trackers?”

Whatever the occasion, we’re sitting and knitting and making stuff up. And we created monikers for each other, hey maybe even the things in life we do. Example, perhaps the greatest example, is that I’m the empress of crochet. Obviously because I have a crochet empire and if I were an emperor it wouldn’t roll off as fast. EM-PE-ROR versus EM-PRESS...syllables.

There’s the ninja knitter, there’s the chicken salad and a tamales namesakes, there’s the mother of all nations, and the most dangerous: the original cutter. That’s just who we are okay? Then there’s the names we’re using for the local grocery stores. You know, because just saying the HEB on North 10th is too much of a chore.

Thus our town is now the proud owner of the GucciBee, the HEB where you can find highly refined items such as tofu and gluten free noodles and not limited to higher priced produce. Then there’s the FernieBee… it’s an older location in the central part of town. You can also find highly refined items at much more convenient prices but their produce is a total hit or miss. We also have the BusyBee, as it sits in the south part of town on the expressway. It has a wide range of wines that no other Bee has.

Lastly, our town used to have its own GhettoBee (has now been decommissioned after the creation of BusyBee). GhettoBee had great produce at poor people prices and a wide variety of random opened packages that people got into because--hey not everyone has manners!

We just have names for everything. And if we don’t we’ll make some up.

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Meeting the Man of My Dreams

Sometimes I read a Nora Roberts book and envision myself to be a romantic. In those moments, as I turn the page to some hopeless romantic gesture of the hero. I really think to myself, life is such a fantasy. As the story draws to an end, I’ll pretend I have a hero out there for me. And then I close the book and laugh. Laughter is the best transition in between make belief and the reality that I’m no heroine.

I’m the guy who was born a girl and somehow can’t wrap his head around how to tell the world without having to tear limbs and cut apart organs. I’m an unlikely hero in my own perspective. Yet, there is some whimsy that qualifies me to be some sort of heroine. If guys could be heroines, then they can find the man of their dreams. I really think I found him this time.

I can’t say for certain that he’s the love of my life or the man I will be with forever. But one night, I rolled around into a peculiar dream that evolved into something more. The dream began with a restaurant with hues of reds and golds. Red tables? Golden chairs? Light wood with a tinge of gold? Not all dreams are exact in all details.

In my dream, he knows my name. I had this dream before I started calling myself Sopphey, so he knew my birth name. And no matter how the dream replayed or how I retold myself the dream. I didn’t know his name. The back story from there is that we grew up in the same neighborhood. The dream indicates that after months or years after the restaurant we find ourselves again. And the details get sketchy from there.

So hey, we were at a restaurant and we’re bubbling away over the menu. And the waiter gets everybody’s drink order and he turns to me. “And for you Sopphey?”

“I’ll have an orange creamsicle.”

“I don’t know if we have any let me check.” He goes away.

We share laughs in his absence. A friend becomes certain that he knows me from somewhere. The ever logical me, insisted that he heard her call my name. He returns. I custom order a drink. He goes away again and when he returns he stands over my right shoulder to address our table. I custom order a meal and every other time he returns to the table he stands over my right shoulder. Sometimes he leans in to speak closer into my ear.

In the end I don’t pay for any drinks. We enjoy our time and pay. We leave. When retelling this story to a friend, she asked me if he was hot. I don’t deny that he was an attractive man. And then the whole encounter replayed in my head. We had dinner at Red Robin. The tables were red and a type of champagne wood. Other details emerged, him being on the right side of my body. I didn’t know who he was, but he definitely knew me--and I was definitely supposed to leave the restaurant without finding out who he was.

If Nora Roberts wrote my life, I have finally found him after waiting for thirteen some years. In a few months or another ten years I’ll find him again and something magical will happen. While there is a slim chance of any of this being true--I’m the unlikely hero. No matter how many times I find myself remembering this, it’s all so comical.