Mistress of the universe (but only for today).

Isn’t it amazing how finishing something that’s been hanging over your head can make you feel like you’ve conquered Everest? If I didn’t think it was kind of sick to do this, I’d say that the longer you prolong the agony on the procrastination side of the task, the more satisfying it is to actually get rid of it. Why take out insects individually when you can bomb a whole colony at once? …Too revealing a metaphor? I had others, but they were all even worse. Occasionally I need those to wake up my students in the mornings.

I finished the buttons and sleeve seams last night during a screening of Saboteur, not to be confused with Sabotage. It was one of the few Hitch films we didn’t see in my magnificent all-Hitchcock film class in grad school, and I can see why. The 39 Steps gets the job done better on the wrong-man end, and North by Northwest is better for wrong-man, spy thriller, chase across America, and for having Cary Grant. Nevertheless, it was not a wasted evening. It’s always pleasant to spend time with Hitchcock, and it isn’t every day you get to see someone fall off the Statue of Liberty.

Aren’t they darling? They are non-identical, like the boys who will wear them, and that is just as it should be. I so wish I had more than about 1.5 skeins left of this yarn. I bought another green of the LL Shepherd Sport, but it is not this wonderful woodsy color; it’s much more bright green. Bah. This was perfect.

I put this on my project notes on Ravelry too, but the main things about BSJs are to establish a consistent way of doing the buttonholes (ask me how I know…) and write whatever schematic and/or notes work for you. I was working from the Opinionated Knitter pattern, the original that had been in the newsletter, and it helped me to set it up row-by-row so I could tell where I was by counting the number of stitches before the decreases or increases. I also decided in the process which row would have the inc-10 and which row would start the “work center 90 only,” so when I did the second jacket, I knew exactly where I was all the time. Seriously, if you’re going to do one of these, plan to do at least two, because it is so unimaginably easy the second time around, you wonder why it was so hard to understand the first time. Also: if you want to do it in one continuous strand, you need at least 300 yards on the skein (in sportweight). I had to do a join on each of them.

I say this honestly: it was a pleasure. I’m getting so much more done these days, and it makes me like knitting a lot more. So much of the rest of my life is all middle and no finish. From time to time, I need things that end.


Begin: 2012

I’ve been thinking about what I want to write for the obligatory New Year’s Day post, when most people I know are making resolutions. I generally prefer to stick to a list of small, achievable goals, about which I am explicitly not permitted to beat myself up. If I do them, great, but there is no annual report where I write in percentages and feel crappy about what I didn’t do. I like “done” lists. I wasn’t wasting my time if I didn’t do everything on the “goals” list, because I was doing things, and here is what I did. It’s very gratifying. I like a little latitude for changes in plans. That used to drive my parents crazy about me. I need the structure of a plan, but the flexibility to alter the plan if I need to. I believe my father, particularly, wants to sit me down and discuss the actual definition of “plan,” but luckily for me, they love me and are comfortable with my adulthood.

This year, I am realizing now, I am off the grid. I’m done with school. I’m not changing jobs, or at least I don’t plan to, and I’ve been in my jobs for long enough that I don’t need to worry about them much. In spite of myriad challenges, our family is stable. I’m not gestating any new humans, and the last one has gotten good at sleeping at nights and eating people food. My husband and I are solid. My house is dreadful, but that’s not new.

…I don’t know what to do with myself.

I’m one of those crazy people who likes school. I still miss coursework, even though I finished the last of it two years ago. Being out here without structure feels kind of nuts. But as I get older, I’m getting better at that. I’m still scared, but I think I’m learning to like it better. Maybe I can really do something now. I don’t know what. I don’t know how. I made a list of things I wanted to do this year, but they are all little things. Maybe this year is about moving forward with little things and having some Big Things meditation time to see where I’m going to go next. I think I’m going to try that.

For now, my friend who is pregnant with twins is going to have babies sometime in the next 24 days, and these BSJs aren’t going to knit themselves. That’s what I’ll do right now.