The Annual Introspective

May 9 marks the day of my undergrad graduation. It is also the day my cat, Stella Rose, adopted me.

I've been sitting on this post since last May. It's always a month where I tend to evaluate myself and my progress due to the anniversary of my graduation. I remember getting to my car after the ceremony had ended, and pictures had been taken. I took off my gown and my cap and sat in the car and....cried. I think I became overwhelmed with the fact that I had no plans post-college. During the ceremony, I was looking around at everyone who had decorated their caps with inspirational messages about how they're moving up in the world and I had no big adventure. I just had my apartment, and my knitting, and whatever knowledge I had from my art classes. I knew I wanted to go to San Diego and make art there, but nothing else. How would my adventure from the summer before (Internship) ever measure up to whatever 2013 was supposed to be?

And then Stella landed in my lap. She crawled out of the bushes at my parents' house during the graduation party, sat in my lap, followed me around, and I decided I needed to take her home. She was probably going to become coyote food if I didn't. So then, I had something to take care of and to keep me busy and give me companionship...but maybe she really adopted ME so SHE could have someone to take care of.

Lots of things have happened since the last time I wrote a blog. Mostly schedule and job changes. I'm now back working solely in San Diego with two jobs. One keeps me busy most of the month and the other is my old internship! Now, who could have told me 4 years ago while I was sitting in my car crying that I would be back at one of the very places that brought me such joy? Also, I think I wrote in a blog post once that I wanted a job where I could spend all day in a yarn shop...and here I am (two days out of the week, at least). Funny how the universe works like that.

Since working at the shop again I have been telling customers about my story - about how it was my internship in 2012 (5 YEARS AGO - GET OVER IT MEGAN) and it was my dream summer. One of them threw me off guard when I had recited my tale...she asked: "What's next?"

What is next? I'm in San Diego. I'm working at the place that brought me so much happiness 5 years ago. What do I do now? Where do I go from here? Are these questions I should be asking myself??? Am I thinking too hard about it??? Do I have to have a "what's next?"

Well, of course not. I could sit here happy as a clam. Sometimes I feel like I'm always looking too far forward and not enjoying the moment. I do know that I need to get back to making art.  I'm still (STILL) working on the damned felted deer (does anyone want to take bets on if I'm going to finish it or not this year?). It seems that after one of my friends bought my mini felted creatures that I just stopped doing any art. I do make little watercolor studies sometimes, but a lot of the time I long for a studio and that halts my progress. I know that these things take time, but I also need to work hard for it.

I found a little bit of inspiration as I was going through my notes for blog posts. I don't remember him saying it, but I wrote about Dylan telling me three things: 1) Stay positive, 2) Keep moving forward and 3) Tell everyone your dreams.

I'm staying as positive as I can. I'm exhausted from my other job at the moment, but still happy (I really need a vacation, though). I'm doing my best to keep moving forward. And as for my dreams? I'm having a hard time thinking of what that is at the moment. I'm sure it will come to me though.

What are some milestone dates in your life that you use to evaluate yourself? Where have you been and where are you going?

New Knitting Pretties

IMG_6332 Ever since I got my Nickle Plated Interchangeable Needles from Knit Picks, I've been searching for the perfect case for them.  At first I had one from Knit Picks that was on clearance (I don't think they even have it anymore...and so I cannot link to it, nor do I know where it is off the top of my head after the move), and it did very nicely for a long time.  It was small, compact, 8" or so square in shape when closed, and held all my interchangeable needles, tools and accessories.  I only replaced it with a Della Q Double Interchangeable Needle Case when I got my Caspian Interchangeable Needles earlier this year (I kind of obsessed over them ever since they came out...so pretty!).

The Della Q one is nice, has labels for the needle sizes so you can grab them at a glance, and it had lots of pockets for the tools and accessories and extra space for extra needles and more sizes.  However, my one issue was the zipper pocket that I kept my cables in on the outside.  I would try to coil the cords as tight as I could, but they would always unwind themselves and then it made it hard to fold the right side over properly when I went to close the case.  It worked for a while, though.

Then Damian came home from Christmas '13 (between him, Arlyn and I, it was a very fibery Christmas) with his Pendleton Needle Case.  He showed me the large pockets and how it had space for both sets of needles.  The only issue for me was that it's only sold by Knit Picks, and they only had red (they call it Geranium) and Grey (if I remember correctly, that's the color Damian has...and I wanted something different than what he had, duh).  In the product photos, it looks like they used to have a green one, which would have been absolutely perfect for me, but it was not available.  So I stuck with my Della Q for a bit longer.  Well, when I was on the website a few weeks ago, just checking to see if any other colors came out, I noticed that they were adding a Marine (Navy) color!  It was the next best thing for me...you know, cause I like nautical stuffs, and navy blue seems to be a popular color in all of that.

So I bought it as soon as it was available (end of July), and it arrived this past Wednesday.  I immediately put all of my needles inside, and I love it.  It takes up less space in my Namaste Harlow Bag (I had been considering getting their Build Your Own Binder, but it would have been a little out of my price range...I love the concept though!), doesn't take up space on the table or on my lap when I have to open it up and it's not an ordeal to close it back up.  Everything seems to be staying in its place so far.  I do miss having the sizes labeled on the pockets since I got my Nickle Plated set before Knit Picks started engraving the sizes on the needles.

Also pictured are Caspian Cable Needles and the Yarn Kitten Project Bag. For cabling, I usually just use a DPN instead of an actual cable needle (you know, the curvy ones).  I liked it because all my DPNs are wood so it kept the stitches on the needle better than a plastic or metal cable needle or DPN.  The Caspian Cable Needles were a bit of an impulse buy, but I love the colors so much and they'll be well used.  That also doesn't risk me accidentally misplacing a DPN in my set.  Knit Picks also had a promotion recently that if you spent a certain amount of money, you would get either the Yarn Kitten bag or the Superfine Project Bag for free.  I chose kittens over Feelin' Superfine because...yanno...cats.

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I am no way affiliated with Knit Picks, Della Q or Namaste Inc., nor am I being paid to talk about their products...I just like their stuff.  A lot.