Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Mind Calming Activities

The past few months have been insane - fires, hurricanes, earthquakes, a terrorist attack (even if the news won't call it that)...and I was making myself crazy thinking about it. What can I do? Why don't I have any useful skills? How can so much happen all at once? What kind of crap person leaves their pet out in a hurricane? What can I do? What can I do? I had to do something for myself to settle down and not have a breakdown or something. One of the things that I love about knitting and crochet is the relaxing rhythm and knew that I needed something simple to work on. Khloe had bought a scarf on her birthday shopping trip (she's seventeen. Seven. Teen. I can't even believe it.) that I picked up - a bunch of thin knit strips tacked together in a lattice pattern and then fringed. It reminded me a bit of a pattern I'd printed out earlier in the summer, so I dug it out, grabbed a ball of yarn, and got to crocheting. The pattern was just what I needed - chain some, double crochet, chain one, double crochet, repeat to the end, chain four, turn, over and over until it was as long as I am tall, slip stitch the short ends together, and add fringe. Calming rhythm, pretty yarn, and I have a new infinity scarf!
I showed it to Khloe and she asked for a black one. I got out some yarn for it and, well, I was kind of worried about this second one. The yarn is acrylic and was kind of stiff to work with. After I'd finished, I tossed it in the washer and dryer with a load of laundry and it came out super soft and lovely. Yay!
Khloe is wearing it to school today since it's gotten cold all of a sudden (it was 80 degrees last week and almost freezing this morning) and asked if I could make one in burnt orange. By the time I had finished both of them my mind had really calmed down. I've donated to some charities, especially for the animals, and am trying to add a donation amount to my monthly budget for future chaotic events. The other thing that's been helping has a bit of a backstory. When I was about 13, Duran Duran released Rio. I loved that record so much and played the heck out of it. I knew every song by heart and sang them constantly (to myself only because people gave me a lot of crap when I sang...a-holes). I actually had quite a great record collection but it's gone because I had trusted someone who turned out to be quite untrustworthy. Anyway, I have driven a Kia Rio for sixteen years now and often sing Rio to her while we're driving. Last week I found a cheap cd of Rio and had to have it - and I still remember almost all of the words to all of the songs! Singing along loudly on my way to and from work has been very therapeutic and keeps me in a decent mood. I walk in smiling and get home with none of the stress or drama that had been bothering me. Eventually I will rebuild that amazing record collection...probably not the colored vinyl import EPs that cost a lot back then, but the rest of it. The 80s are back - did you see Bananarama on Graham Norton? I sang along to that, too! I'm off today and plan to spend some time in my sewing room finishing a project that's been slowly going for a few weeks. I should be back soon!