Category Archives: Family

Day 5 – Yes…I’m one behind.

Time keeps on slipping away from me.  I’m a day behind, and I’m not entirely sure what was so important yesterday that kept me from writing.  This seems to happen a lot these days.

Time is such a fluid concept.  It’s quite concrete when you talk about a clock, or when you have to be at work, or when you’re sitting in the dentist’s chair.  It’s more obscure when you’re engaged in something fun or engaging.  I find that I often run out of it.  And since you can’t borrow a cup of minutes or a quart of hours from the neighbor – once it’s gone that’s it.

Sometime it passes in a blink.  Sleeping is one of those times.  So is reading a good book.  It can go so fast that you look at a clock, and then it’s several hours later.  Now is a concept of time in the past tense, since as soon as you are aware of it being "now" it’s already "then."

Other times it drags by, like a heavy sack you’re dragging around with you.  When you want so desperately to sleep, and it just won’t come.  When you’re waiting for something or someone and it or they don’t show up when expected.  In those cases, "now" stretches out in an endless elastic string.  Even then, though, when what you’re waiting for arrives, time snaps back and it’s like you never waited.

Time took longer when I was a kid.  Summers flowed on and on, until we were so ready to go back to school that it seemed like September would never arrive.  A school day was so much longer than six hours.  Trips to the grocery store lasted a lifetime.

Now, not so much.  Now I get up in the morning, go through my day trying (and failing) to be present in each moment, only to find that it’s 10PM and time to go to bed again.  The night passes more quickly than the day, and it all starts over again.  How to make each moment longer seems to be the theme of my life now. Just a short time ago my children were young, and we were living in the small rental on Chaucer Drive.  Micah was a newborn with soft dark hair and big brown eyes.  He still had soft dark hair and big brown eyes – they’re just several feet higher in the air.

How do you make life slow down so you can fully experience it?  That seems to be my big question tonight.

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Day 3 – Shana Tova – שנה טובה ומתוקה

To all my family and friends – the Jewish, Christian, Muslim, Hindi, and Atheist – שנה טובה ומתוקה – May you have a good and sweet year.

Rosh Hashanah is (one of) the Jewish New Year(s).  There are others.  I’ll explain another time.  Rosh Hashanah happens on the first day of the seventh month of the Hebrew calendar, making it the “head” of the Jewish year.  Much discussion and many rabbinic writings on this, so feel free to look it up.  Ten days from now, we celebrate (perhaps not the best word)  Yom Kippur , the Day of Atonement, when Jews repent and atone for misdeeds and sins in the past year.  It’s the holiest day of the year for us.  Even though I’m not religious, and don’t observe my Jewish faith in most ways, I still feel a pull at this time of year to reflect on the past year and the promise of the new.  It is said that on Rosh Hashanah it is written (in the Book of Life) and on Yom Kippur it is sealed (in the same book, as in your fate is). 

Things I’ve done this past year:

Taken my friends for granted.
Told lies and half truths.
Been malicious in my thoughts and words.
Way too many things to list here.

People I’ve hurt/let down/transgressed against:

Most

For almost everything, I’m truly sorry.  For some things, I’m only regretful.  For a very few things, I feel no remorse.  Being brutally honest here, so in the spirit of the day – don’t judge me.  I think that there are times that all of us falter and let the baser side of our nature surface without really regretting it.  Times when we’ve been cut off in traffic and swear at the other driver as we pass him.  Times we’ve walked past a homeless person and instead of helping in some small way, we’ve just felt thankful that it’s not us in that situation.  Other times when we’ve deliberately dodged a phone call or a visit because we just wanted to be left alone – but we lied or mislead the caller or visitor.  Then there’s the big stuff.  I’m sure you get my point.

Every major religion has a time of introspection and atonement.  Some religions only require you to confess to a priest or person-of-the-cloth to obtain forgiveness.  Other’s require only that you be sincerely sorry in your heart.  Many require some sort of penance, or sacrifice to absolve your misdeeds and transgressions.  Judaism requires you to take personal responsibility for your actions, and apply directly to the person you’ve wronged for absolution.  G-d can only forgive those actions that were against G-d.  Each person needs to have the opportunity to hear your apology personally.  I’ve only occasionally risen to that challenge.  I’d like to say it was because I didn’t want to cause further hurt by admitting to my family and friends that my reasons were selfish, but who are we kidding here?  They know.  The real reason is that I don’t want to be there when they DON’T forgive me.  Because deep down, I’m pretty sure I’m a horrible person who doesn’t deserve forgiveness.

Before you all comment that “that’s SO not true!” and “you’re not!” let me tell you that like very other person in the world, my own perception of myself is rarely based in reality.  I know, on an intellectual level, that I’m not a horrible person.  I’m no worse or better than anyone else.  But why take a chance?  Why open myself up to that potential glaring criticism. 

So, while I have no intention of going to each person individually to apologize, I want to say that for those people I’d ducked visits and phone calls from – I’m sorry.  To the people I should have visited and didn’t – I’m going to try harder this new year.  If I didn’t say the right thing, I’m sorry.  I probably had no idea what to say, which is usually the case.  That’s not to say I don’t care, or am not sympathetic.  It just means that I probably couldn’t put that into words.  Writing is easy.  Talking is hard.

Hopefully, most of you will accept this blanket apology.  For those who don’t – I understand, and someday I’ll come to you personally and ask for your forgiveness.

 

 

 

Training – Day 2

Day 2 of training. 

An interesting point was made by my son.  I posted an article about a woman in Saudi Arabia who has been sentenced to 10 lashes for driving a car.  Other women have been detained for the same thing, but this is the first one to be sentenced to corporal punishment.  I was not happy when I read it, and said so when I posted it on Facebook.  Micah commented that we shouldn’t be judging other cultures.  A friend, Ed, explained to Micah that it isn’t a matter of judging, it’s a matter of not tolerating bullies.  Micah, as is his way, stuck to his convictions and didn’t budge.

I have mixed feelings about the whole discussion.  On the one hand, I feel it’s wrong to treat women as lesser people.  I feel that by requiring women to cover their faces and hair, never leave the home without a male relative along for the ride, not allowing them to drive, or vote, or support their families, it devalues them.  That comes from my own upbringing, of course.  I’m a daughter of the 60s and 70s, and it is engrained in my soul that women can do anything men can do – and should.  Feminism runs in my veins.

Micah is a millenial child.  He’s too young to remember the women’s and civil right battles we experienced in the United States.  It seems to me that equal rights and opportunities don’t have the same value they had when I was growing up.  My mom was one of the very few who worked, let alone had a career.  I never expected to be supported by a man.  I’m an IT manager and my sister is an attorney – both traditionally male occupations.  While it may not occur to Micah that women don’t always get equal treatment in the business world, and there are still some big stereotypes we operate under, I would have thought he would understand on some level the struggles that still go on, albeit in a much quieter fashion.

Tolerance is something I’ve always tried to instill in my children.  Apparently I’ve done a good job with him.  But I want him to know there’s a difference between cultural tolerance and tolerating bullies.  It’s not tolerance to sit by and let half of the population of a country be kept locked away.  Tolerance is not turning your back when  someone is being put down.  Every person deserves the opportunity to make their thoughts and needs known, and be able to live their lives free of oppression.

This issue is doubly interesting because we have an exchange student this year.  He’s from Yemen, and is Muslim.  We’ve had a few discussions, and he agrees with some of what I think and disagrees with other ideas.  That’s ok.  We can agree to disagree.  But where do you draw the line? At what point does tolerance become tacit approval?

Obviously I’m not going to fix the world with a blog post, but maybe it will make someone think more deeply, and change a few minds.

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WIPs and FOs

For you non-knitterly people, that’s work(s) in progress and finished objects.  The cold and the snow has meant many knitting hours and I have used them to good measure.  I’m actually considering a FOPM – finished object per month – challenge for myself.  I think I’ve covered all the title acronyms except OK, and that goes without saying!

First, the BSJ turned out incredibly cute, but the recipient insists on growing daily, so it no longer fits.  So, a new KO (knitted object) is in order.  Because the recipient has to be the most happy baby I’ve ever seen, these seem just the thing – Chubbie Wubbles Leg Warmers.

I’m using the recommended fiber in the pictured colorway, appropriately titled “Lollipop.”  Just was a small girl needs to feel pulled together.

The FOs that are awaiting delivery are the Beginner’s Knit Poncho from SweaterBabe, and Spiral Legwarmers from Lilliputian Stitches.  These were by request, and turned out amazingly cute.  Hopefully the recipients will agree with me.

The color isn’t true in the photo.  The poncho is actually a more muted blue.  I used Deborah Norville Serenity Chunky Yarn in the Stormy colorway, just under two balls.  The picture on Hobby Lobby’s website is much more true to the color.  The legwarmers are Caron Simply Soft in Lime Light.  They’re a really vivid neon lime and very soft.  I used less than one skein.

WIP include some rainbow socks and Nancy Bush’s Anniversary Socks from the book Favorite Socks.

The Anniversary Socks have been a WIP for six months.  The Rainbow socks are more recent.  Both are taking entirely too long to make!

Rainbow Socks

The Rainbow Socks are Lorna’s Laces Shepherd Sock in in the Lorikeet colorway, I think.  I lost the ball band but I know I got it from my LYS, River Knits.  Not sure how I like them – the colors are much brighter than in the photo, which I like.  The pooling has a sort of a spiral twist, which it ok, but I’ll see how I feel.  I have to finish them because they were the socks I started on the night my mom went into the hospital for the last time.  She passed away on December 28 – just as I was getting to the heel of the first sock.

Anniversary Socks

Knitpicks supplied the yarn for the Anniversary Socks.  Gloss fingering yarn in the Bordeaux colorway.  I’m hoping to have them finished by the end of February.

Gratuitous Dog Picture

I posted this photo because I just love my dogs.  🙂