Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Patience and the Zen of Unsnarling Yarn

I know that this will come as a surprise to you but sometimes I am an impatient person.

I Know! Who knew!

Yes, there are times when I run ahead of where I should be. I zoom forward, not taking my time and assessing a situation.

Like when I decided that what I definitely should do (without putting this before the Lord I might add) was to become a scrapbook consultant for a national company. I was new to scrapbooking. I was looking for something to fill a hole that had opened up as I left a job that I had loved but that had come to an end.

Scrapbook Consultant! That’s what I was meant to be.

No, I was not. Believe me I love scrap booking but I was so not meant to be a consultant. I struggled with the snarl and knot of doing what didn’t come naturally. All because I forged ahead without thinking.

I tailgate, but only in a non-threatening way of course, because someone is going too slow. Or at least I think they are going too slow when in reality they might be going the speed limit but just too slow for me.

I conceive an idea for a project and I need to then run out and get the materials that very instant. I must!

I wonder why we can’t board the plane RIGHT NOW. I am here so why can’t we take off. HHBL will fully attest to this one. I am an impatient plane loader. I am fine once I am on the plane though.

For the most part.

So, on Sunday, I finished knitting a pair of socks. That should come as no surprise to those who know me because, well, I knit a lot of socks. But I had to immediately cast on a new pair. I didn’t want to have those needles be empty. I think that no PON (projects on the needles in knitter language) is something that strikes fear into the heart of those who regularly play with pointy sticks.

Nothing on the needles! Gads what will I do?? I must cast on immediately.

And if I had slowed down a bit. Taken my time. I might have saved myself a boat load of extra work. The loss of my patience. The spewing of epithets, under my breath but still…..

If I had slowed down and taken my time and taken care and taken…..


taken a short vacation to Maui, I might not have had to deal with….

img_5989                                       The Araucania Tangle of Death

This picture does not begin to show you how bad the tangle actually was. What you can’t see it that there is a very large snarl at the top of the skein. Very. Large.

And it was angry, so angry, that I had disturbed it from it’s lovely skeininess. It was all tucked in together, wound in upon itself and very happy that way thankyouverymuch. It didn’t want to be made into socks. It wanted to continue it’s existence in my stash, foment stash rebellion.

I had other plans. I grabbed it. I untwisted it and stretched it over the chair legs so that I could wind it with the ball winder (the most marvelous invention evah!). I started to unwind a bit so that I could insert it into the winder…….

And then I had to go and get something. So I dropped the yarn end on the floor and walked away quickly….

not realizing that the yarn had become entangled with my sausage toes, which proceeded to pull the skein of yarn off the chair, onto the floor and drag it for a step or two…

Hey! Why is there something pulling on my foot? Oh no…….

Yes, in my haste to wind the ball and do other things at the same time because I am impatient and don’t take time to slow down and smell the wool I had made myself quite a mess. Snarl city. Tangle of Death.

Why do I not learn my lesson. When will I get it through my head that I do not have to go through life at Mach 3 and that if I slowed down and smelled the wool, and the occasional flower, I might not have to deal with so many Araucania Tangle’s of Death. That is why I play with pointy sticks in the first place for the love of Peter, Paul and Mary. To keep my blood pressure down.

And so, because I had been in a hurry I had to slow way down. I had to dig deep for my inner Yarn Untangling Zen. You think there isn’t Yarn Untangling Zen? Then you haven’t ever had to untangle a skein of fairly expensive yarn. This stuff didn’t cost $1 at Michaels. You can’t just yank on it and hope for the best. I had to start slowly and untangle a bit and wind a bit into a regular ball. Untangle. Wind. Untangle. Wind. Untangle……..

For 40 minutes. I timed it.

And after that then I could wind it on the ball winder, which took about 2 minutes.

All because I didn’t slow down and channel my inner yarn zen in the first place. When will I ever learn.

But the socks are looking absolutely excellent if I do say so myself.


  1. There is nothing like the satisfaction of untangling a good snarl! Can you knit with the yarn in a skein, or does it have to be in ball form?

  2. I prefer a center pull ball when knitting.

  3. Um, are you able to post a picture of the said socks? I'm a visual learner, you know. That's why I favor picture books.


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