Full Plates and Knitting Bags

"Just a Reminder.  You signed up to provide a vegetarian dinner for 20 board members tomorrow night."    A couple of years ago I sat at the desk in my classroom and stared at this email in horror.  It went on, “As it is Lent for those board members who are Greek Orthodox, be certain that the meal is vegetarian.”  This note came from the head of the hospitality committee at my younger’s son’s Greek language charter school.  I cannot recall all of the particulars of the obligations and stresses I had at this time (although I do remember that one of my children was struggling with health issues and I also had a few rather trying students, one of whom had recently put a copious amount of hand sanitizer in my iced tea), but I can clearly recall how this email felt like a painful jolt of electricity. 

It came at a time when I felt as if I needed to run away from home to find one moment of calm, uninterrupted time.  I’d signed up to provide this meal months earlier and had completely forgotten doing so.  While life isn’t quite so hectic now—my husband has retired and is taking up much of the slack in housework and chauffeuring children—and my son is relatively healthy now—I still shudder when I look back and remember that email.  I fight to not over commit myself, but this month, with self-imposed knitting deadlines I've been pushing the envelope, so to speak, in terms of setting and attempting to reach my goals. 

Ironically, however, since knitting is generally such a pleasurable and relaxing activity (except when attempting to knit lace after dealing with high schoolers all day), I can’t say that a full plate has pushed me to the point where I have to take a mental health day (as was the case with the whole dinner email), but a day off to finish knitting the following works in progress would be restorative. . . .

Sew buttons on baby sweater.  Sweater is newborn sized and my niece's baby is due September 15.  Wait . . . that’s tomorrow!

Finish necktie I'm making for a co-worker.  (He's paying me to do this, so I really should get cracking.)


Cast on another Brynn shrug, knit wildly, seam, block, take a picture, and submit to Rowan Ambassador contest by September 28.     (I have one made that's shown below but want to make one with yarn that's the weight suggested by designer.)


This is the Aran yarn the pattern calls for.  I
made the red shrug shown above with Rowan
Tweed, which is a worsted weight. 
Finishing sewing up my May Queen mouse.  The poor creature has been languishing in a drawstring bag hanging from a hook in my knitting nook.


Knit this scarf I started as a Christmas gift for one of my younger son’s teachers last year.  I created a design using the school’s initials. (I sewed the bag several years ago, when I was going through a bag phase.)


Keep knitting with this gorgeous Louisa Harding yarn.  I love this yarn (Willow Tweed) and the lace cardigan pattern (from the Little Cake pattern book), but put this work aside to knit baby gifts and my shrug.


Finish this sweater for a co-worker’s baby that is due in November.  This pattern is from 60 MoreQuick Baby Knits, a volume that is filled with cute designs using 200 Superwash Sport from Cascade Yarns.  I’m using the recommended yarn here and am happy with the results. 




  1. Oh no, I'm so sorry to hear about all of the stress, I really hope that things start to settle down a little soon. Good for you taking a mental health day, sometimes it just has to happen. All of your projects are looking wonderful, I cannot believe how many projects you have going though, wow!

  2. I know how you feel! So much to knit, so many family obligations, and so very little time.. Good luck with finishing all of your projects! :)

    1. Thanks so much for commenting on my blog. I've been plugging away. I really enjoy knitting when I get home from work in the evenings.

  3. Your first paragraph both made me smile (you write very wittily) and shiver with a nasty frisson of recognition (I often find I have signed myself up to something months in advance that with six months notice sounds like a breeze and by the time it comes round is a nightmare) and in your particular scenario I don't know what I would have done other than a) run for the hills b) plead a nasty case of salmonella poisoning in the household making cooking for others impossible! Does that sound craven?! I am sure you rose to the occasion better! Your WsIP all look great - you are so versatile in what you turn your hand to. I love your new look blog banner etc - very clean and stylish - although i did love your collage of vintage images which aren't here any more. E x

  4. I can relate to this, been feeling so overwhelmed with things I decided to knit lately - need to remember it's supposed to be fun! Good luck with all the projects! I love the pic with the yarn and flowers at the top of the blog.

  5. Thanks so much for reading my blog and for the compliment. I need to remember the fun part, too.

  6. You're doing well - I think that the first step in achieving a goal is listing it and outlining steps to achieve it - which is what this post has done. I'm steadily working my way through my UFOs and it's making me feel so much better and ORGANISED - sorting out all of those projects. Keep going - I keep telling myself that when I've finished them I'm going to treat myself to something extravagant in the yarn department - I like the look of that Louisa Harding - I may have to buy a skein or so of her hand-beaded yarn to make a little bag or hat - but not till I've got through some more UFOs! Judy. x

  7. LOVE LOVE LOVE the buttonless baby blue sweater
    and your new shrug. Lookin good


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