Tuesday, January 28, 2020

One Little Word: January

Unbelievably, it's the last Tuesday of the month -- this month has flown by, not that I'm all that sad about it (January is my least favorite month and it always seems to crawl). It's time to check in on my word for the year for the first time: How has savor made itself known in my life?

I think that one reason this month has gone by so quickly is because it's been very busy. By the time this month is over, the Mister will have gone on four work trips out of town in addition to being out at meetings several evenings when he's been at home. All that time that he's been away means a lot of solo parenting for me. Rainbow and I have gotten used to being on our own over the past couple of years as he's been traveling more, and she's now old enough to do a lot of things herself, but being the only parent around also means more time is taken away from me -- I have to do the school drop-offs and pickups, all the meal prep and cleanup, and all the household chores. When life gets busier, it can get harder to stop and enjoy the moment -- which is why I think my chosen word for the year has been even more important.

Over the past few weeks, I've made room to savor in two distinct ways. One has been to make a point to notice and appreciate small moments of comfort or pleasure: The boost from that first sip of coffee in the morning. The relaxation from stretching out in bed after a long day. The feeling of release that comes with taking off your work clothes and getting into soft pajamas. These are moments that only last a few seconds, but I've been making an effort to focus entirely on them for the few seconds they take rather than doing them while my thoughts are wrapped up in something else.

The second has been to literally slow down and enjoy what I'm doing when I'm doing it. I've been doing this with the books I've been reading and with my crafting. I've noticed with the past several books I've read, all ebooks, that I am consciously slowing down as I read and pausing more frequently to reflect on what I've read. I'm reminding myself that I'm reading these books for pleasure, and to get the most pleasure out of them, I need to read every word and be present for every page. As to my crafting, I've never been really able to determine if I'm a process knitter or a project knitter, but with my two most recent cast-ons, I'm definitely focusing on the process.

I started my Darkwater sweater on Friday night, a pattern I've been planning to knit for nearly a year, and though I very much want to have this sweater done so I can wear it, I am deliberately taking my time. I think this approach will also pay off, because there are some rather long floats in the colorwork yoke, and the slower pace at which I'm knitting is helping to ensure that my tension remains good (see how nice and loose my floats are on the right there?).

After finishing up that sock yarn and mohair/silk hat I've been working on, I also started another prototype of the pattern using some extremely old handspun that I've been saving (hoarding?) since it was spun. Is there any better way to savor your knitting than to knit with some of your precious early handspun?

Ohai, the sun is still hiding.
Using one of my earliest handspun skeins is a great way to see how far I've come in my spinning, because this yarn is all over the place in terms of thickness. At one point that inconsistency would have bothered me, but now I am really appreciating it because it makes it that much more obvious that this yarn was made by hand by a human being. Even though I can spin yarn today that's more consistent, the general lack of uniformity in handspun versus commercially spun yarn is what makes it so much more pleasurable to work with.

Thanks to Honore´ for hosting the One Little Word discussion this year!


  1. I love your examples of those small moments of comfort, and how taking the time to notice and savor them can make a real difference. There is always something to look forward to in the day, even if it's just a few seconds. It sounds like you are off to a great start with your word!

  2. I am nodding my head with Bonny at your examples. You are off to a very good start (especially with that sweater!!)

  3. Oh my, you spin your own yarn? I am taking my hat off to you! The colours in that 'old' ball are just lovely ... I like very much your reminder to enjoy the comfort of things, and I will be remembering this in February for myself.

  4. Slow Down and Notice are habits we all need to take in. I love how you were able to savor when you did that. I've noticed ;-) I am better at thinking Both/And when I do, too. (and ps. I LOVE that sweater!)

  5. Savor is a great word and an even better thing to do. Savoring moments makes them sweeter. Slowing down is a good approach to savoring. Your knitting is lovely. And handspun - I only dream about it.

  6. I love reading about another blogger's Savor month! You and I have had a similar month--everything you posted about a traveling spouse this month...ditto! I think savoring the small things has kept me on the positive side of this trying month. Especially that stretching out in bed with my fuzzy blanket. Loving your sweater start.

  7. I so appreciate your sharing how and what and why you are savoring the precious moments in your daily lives. Too often we get caught up in the busyness and the things that do/can "go wrong" and neglect to stop and appreciate the goodness. Your knitting is lovely and as with Alexa, I admire that you also spin your yarns... on my next life's bucket list.