Knittwitt Knitter

Friday, January 13, 2017

It is okay.

Three simple words. It is okay.

As a parent, we teach our kids the basic tools for life. How to tie shoes, balance a checkbook, drive a car, bake a cake, etc... However, without even knowing it, we teach them how to endure. We tell them constantly, it will be okay. You will get through this. I know when my son use to get a small cut, he would scream and cry. Now, after countless times repeating it is going to be okay, he just shakes minor cuts off. I am sure someday the same thing will happen with is first love and many other experiences. 

My childhood was a bit unusual. I have eluded to the fact, I was not a "happy" kid growing up and I never felt a sense of belonging. I also never felt a sense of reassurance. I do not remember ever crying in my parents arms with them comforting me. They had their limits. It just was not part of their nurturing. Therefore, I am here as a grown adult craving those words.

For example, years ago, we found ourselves with a very sick dog. This dog is an important part of our family. I was so scared we were losing him. I remember a dear friend told me, "it will be okay". I interpreted that as her having a crystal ball, or algorithm that predicted the future. She knew my dog would survive. In reality it meant, no matter what happens, life will go on. When I discovered what people meant, it was an epiphany. People will help me through the bad times and we will endure. The feeling of hope, security and comfort flooded my mind.

As an adult, I find myself searching for this reassurance that I can in fact endure what life throws at me. I do not have the baseline developed from childhood. How do I fix that? Well, I believe it is simply to find the power within. Tell myself, it will be okay when I worry. The overwhelming sensation is amazing. Taking a deep breath and realizing endurance is there if we chose it.

As for the past few years, I have noticed I am a very needy friend. I believe this all ties into the same issues. I have taught myself to trust my own instincts instead of asking for others advice. I have also found comfort from writing and thinking about situations. I hope in the future I can be an even better friend and not so needy!

Hope all is well.

Friday, December 30, 2016

New Years and What is Next

Hello all.

I hope this post finds you well. It has been a blur the past few months. At work I have several collaborations end and submitted for publication. A successful year none the less but a lot of changes. I would like to reflect on my personal and professional goals.

Personally, I would like to be the friend to others that I am searching for. Helpful, dependable, and not needy or take more than I give. I am also interested in being a supportive mom. Every hockey game, educational needs/advances, and more active at home. This will be achieved by my own increase in energy by taking slow (baby steps) to a better health. I love running in the cold. However, I stopped because I could not master the skill. However, I do not need to master it, I am not an Olympian, all I need is to do it for the energy and endorphins. Finally, the past year has been the best of our marriage. I would like to keep this going in a positive direction. Listening to my partner, communicating concerns before they become a huge pile of angst.

Professionally, I would like to continue to support and help graduate students while expanding my collaborations. I teach in the spring, I would like to redesign my course. Making the material relate-able to specific research projects to show the value in techniques.

These are large goals with much work ahead of me. However, there is no penalty for failure or retrying as many times as necessary. Any changes in the right direction are good and will help with all goals. Plus, if I do make all these changes, I will have nothing left for 2017.

Good luck to all with your resolutions.

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

WIP Wednesday: Oct 5, 2016

Hello knitters.

Here in the midwest, the leaves are changing colors, the smell of burning leaves is in the air and the temperatures are falling fast. October is here. I love this time of year because I find it so calming. My husband loves everything pumpkin so he is in pure heaven right now. All we can do is soak up as much fall as we can before ole man winter shows ups.

We spent the past weekend celebrating Oktoberfest in La Crosse, WI. We try to make this event every year. I love the Maple Leaf Parade. We run into so many friends and family along the parade route. Then we send my son off to grandmas and do some bar hopping. Finally, we end the day with Big Al's pizza and a fire. It is a long but fun day. We drove home the next day and surprised a dear friend of mine with a birthday party. We had Mexican food, homemade guacamole, and margaritas. After a full weekend, we were all asleep before our heads hit the pillow.

As for knitting, we were able to finish the beer mitts for Oktoberfest. Everyone enjoyed their mitt and I am sure I will have plenty to make for next year.
I kept a grey mitt for myself. Somehow my husband lost his in the shuffle. I love this little keepsake to remember the event. One dear friend, Joey, I see every year at Oktoberfest. Joey and I go way back. I met Joe in Kindergarten. He was my reading partner. We have remained friends ever since.

You can see Joe with his family and sporting his beer mitt.

The whole weekend was filled with fun and I am so glad to have these moments in my life and great people all around. EIEIEI O! Happy Oktoberfest.

Friday, September 16, 2016

Five on Friday

Hi everyone.

I hope this post finds you well. We have been busy here. Last weekend we visited some friends and hung out all weekend. The air was crisp as we enter fall, we sat knitting while the kids ran and played. We ate good food, laughed and enjoyed each others company. I am saddened that my best friend moved but we are keeping our relationship strong by long phone calls and long weekend visits.

 During our visit we went to the Riverfront Museum.
 Two buddies reuniting.
 A big stick bug discovered by the kiddos.
Eating salmon and trying to maintain better habits.
A new sock for my boy. He picked out this bright skein while visiting friends.

After many emotional months and a journey into my own past, I have realized I am moving in the right direction. Healing takes a while for any wound but realizing there is a wound is the first step. I feel like I have been carrying bagage from my past. Addressing the emotions and feelings at the time was not possible due to my age, knowledge and lack of experiences. As I raise my child these issues and memories are surfacing. However, the emotions are different. I realize my past is just that, a past. I will address the emotion, let it flow and move forward. I will not let it overwhelm me or take control of my future. 


Wednesday, September 7, 2016

TJBTM: Creatures of Habit

Hello all.

I sit here thinking. Not able to really grasp life and relax. The fall semester started and confusion is in the air. A new year of graduate students seem more confused and overwhelmed compared to the last 5 years I have been here. In addition, we have lost several coworkers due to the climate and better offers at other universities. While changes can lead to a bright future, I am dreading the time it will take to get there. The tension and climate is at a breaking point. Everyone is stressed and pushed to their limits. Looking at it from a positive point of view, I believe everyone is extremely impressed with the ability for the department to thrive while all of the changes unfold.
Home life is just as chaotic. I feel very torn between being a mom and a wife. The rolls are very different and for a long time I was just the mom. Balancing a career, child in school and a marriage is something I want to come naturally but seems to always take more effort than I expected. I love my family and all my different rolls, I am just learning how to prioritize and let little things go.
My son changed schools from last year to this because we bought a home. He is not happy at his new school or the after school care he receives. This really pulls at my heart strings. I am hoping he will adjust and find things that make him happy to be at his new environment but currently it really is making me question our move.
Finally, I am struggling hard with taking a healthier approach to life. I want to be social and have time to see friends. However, to maintain a healthy eating habits I have to be in the kitchen preparing our meals and planing out grocery shopping for a lot of my free time.
It would be easier if I was a millionaire and could just pay someone to do it all for me. I could just read to my son and eat the already cut up fruit. BUT since I am clearly not a millionaire. I will struggle and find a balance, get in a groove and before you know it, we may have a routine down. Well, that is the plan at least.

WIP Wednesday

Hi Knitters.

I hope this post finds you well. We have been super busy soaking up as much sun as we can before the cold WI winter returns. Two weeks ago, we went to Rapid City South Dakota. We had a great time sight seeing. The Black Hills were my favorite part. We also were in a traffic jam of buffaloes at Custer National Park. It was amazing and I think N had a great time just being before school started.

N started first grade last week. What a change. There is more routine and he is struggling a bit to get energized. I feel within a few more days he will have it down.

 I was able to get a bit of knitting done in the car. Most evenings I was exhausted and headed straight to bed. The library emailed me before the trip with my requested fulfilled. I was able to take Knitlandia on the trip with me. I am almost done and enjoying every bit of it.
 It is almost time for Oktoberfest and we love to spend time with all of our friends. I decided to make beer stein mitts for everyone. Of course it is crunch time and I need to knit like 5 more! Plus, I need to make all of the thumbs and tons of ends to tie in! Eeek!

This past weekend we spent time in New Glarus, WI. We saw the brewery and toured the town. It is definitely a cute place to visit.

Enjoy your week knitters.

Friday, August 12, 2016

Five on Friday: A little of this and that

Hello all.

It has been a while since I posted. Not because my mind and thoughts are going but more because I love summer and in WI you have to get as much as you can while it lasts. I work at UW-Madison and it is the time of the year where people are buzzing. Students move in Monday and campus will be busy soon again. While tackling my work load I have found the preparedness to be the best tool for looking ahead.

November, I will go to Raleigh, NC for a conference and hopefully some sight seeing in the evening! I am looking forward to the trip as I have never been to Raleigh. October is recruiting, always a busy and fast month. For fun, we run away to La Crosse for Oktoberfest. I am currently knitting beer gloves for all of our friends and family this year.

As for life in general, I am still moving forward but a little slower than I would like. I spent the weekend in Tampa, FL watching my niece and nephew for a few days while their parents had a trip. It was the best opportunity to get to know these kids and have quality time since they are so far away. However, this is the longest I have been apart from my own son. I started to feel very anxious the day before I left. The morning by myself with the kiddos, I cried for 10 mins in the bathroom trying to figure out what my emotions meant. Basically, I missed my family and it was going to be a while until I see them. However, I can do this. I have a great opportunity and had a blast the rest of the weekend. Thinking about this event more, I realized that my anxiety is not straight forward. I was anxious and I thought it was because I could not handle two kids for 4 days on my own. In in reality, I was just missing my family. Once I realized the emotion, it was like instant relief. Anxiety literally fell from my body and I was at peace. Yes, I am sad that I am away from my family however, everyone is fine and I need to take this opportunity with my niece and nephew and bond with them.

 My niece and nephew at Johnny Rocketes.
 My niece and I while H sleeps.

Maybe this is a key way to move forward, instead of taking the anxiety at face value look and search my emotions to understand my true feelings.

Of course I was able to visit 2 yarn stores while in FL. I had a wonderful time. I am a huge fan of The Fiber Seed yarn and I bought another skein for myself.
New yarn from Fiber Seed purchased at Roxy's Yarn.

I finished the weekend with knitting in the airport. Another blogger discussed how she knits a pair of socks for her kids every year on the first day of school. I love this idea and decided to start the tradition with N. 
Knitting N's first grade socks while in the airport.

Enjoy your weekend my loves.