This is the time of year when I would normally be focused on gift-making. No matter the time of year, when I make a gift for someone I do it with mindfulness and intentionality, opting not to rush but to think of the recipient and focus on their well-being. The last few weeks have not been conducive to that, so I set aside my plans and turned to a comforting scrap project. I am using odd balls and scraps given to me by two different friends and a pair of circular knitting needles that once belonged to the grandmother of a former co-worker, so symbolically at least, it reminds me of our connectedness as human beings. Using scraps is a reminder that we need to make the best use of what we have, more so now than ever as people will take steps to harm the planet further. It is also good to remember that even the bits that seem insignificant can combine with other bits to turn into something beautiful, warm, and comforting. Personally, this project has been perfect for me during this time--it does not require a lot of attention so my mind can wander, but not too far because I have to keep track of some things. Deciding what yarn to use next and watching how it knits up brings a smile to my face. And I like watching it grow and imagining what it will look like when it's done and I'm using it.
I have also had to reluctantly accept that one of my favourite shirts will now have to be a work shirt/apron kind of thing or I will cut off the buttons and use the fabric. Ten years ago, a friend used to send her son over with bags of clothes, telling me to take what I wanted and donate the rest. I am wearing one of the shirts she gave me as I type. In one of the bags was a big, light brown, lightweight shirt. It was big and loose on me and I loved it. I wore it as a jacket sometimes and sometimes as a comfortable baggy shirt. I loved the fact that it was so loose. I loved the fabric. I wore it a lot. The fabric started to get thin and little tears appeared. I mended them. Then bigger tears happened. I mended them. But yesterday I heard the dreaded sound of another big tear right near where I mended the last big tear and it looks like there is just no way to mend it again. So I will have to accept that the shirt I have worn a lot for a decade is now ready to be retired.