do-over

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This is the winter of knitted do-overs. First the gray hat for Jonas (visible here, covered in snow and inside out), which was lost for a time and then found, only  to be too short for his liking. Then the red hat for Sylvan, which again needed more length, and less smudgkin. Now, the realization that the neckwarmer for Sylvan is too big and should be torn out and re-knit. What the heck is going on here?

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As you know, I’m not afraid to pull up my big girl panties, rip it out and do it over so it can be right. Because what looks right to me may not match what feels right on the recipient. It’s OK. Why make something wearable at all if you’re not interested in balancing form and function? (Well, OK, I hear you art people thinking sometimes you’re just making something and it’s about the process of making and I get that.)

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It isn’t surgery. Or landing planes on aircraft carriers. Or souffles. It’s knitting! It can be wrong and that’s OK, because anything knitted can be ripped out and made right. You call it tinking, because tink is knit backwards, if you are un-knitting one stitch at a time. Other times you are frogging because you rip-it, rip-it, rip-it out, just pulling the stitches right off.

This is life. It’s how we learn. Making mistakes, reflecting, trying to assess where it went wrong, thinking about our thinking process and how it went awry, trying again. And again, maybe the same mistake again…like me and the darn knitwear. The perfectionist in me took a long time to really know this in my heart and practice. I don’t love to be wrong, I don’t love to do it over, but it’s easier with things than people. It’s hard to make mistakes that hurt people—those are the mistakes I will always hate.

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This is kind of like my masters e-portfolio. I write a 5-10 page essay, submit it to my advisor; she reads it and approves it or offers me feedback for what to change. So far I have passed 2 of my 14 competencies; one was a redo. I have submitted 3 more and am waiting to hear if I passed them the first time out of the box or will need to revise.

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I like this February afternoon light right now. It’s making things look very mellow. Oh my goodness, did you notice that tiny green SPROUT bookmark? Something special from a girl who knows my heart. They are adorable as you can see. So cute and softly rubbery that I want to eat them. And if you are trying to impersonate Totoro these bookmarks make a handy umbrella.

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