two years: a resolution

I am not going to buy any yarn for two whole years.

That's right.

Stuart and I have been talking for a long time about The Next Big Thing. As in, where we're going to live next. Madison is a wonderful city in many ways (atrocious winter weather notwithstanding), but we are hundreds of miles from anyone in either of our families. Now that we have two children who love to see their uncles and grandparents, we are feeling the strong urge to move closer to family. Thus far, several factors have held us back: I had to finish my doctorate, Stuart has a pretty good job, we have a house...but the main thing is that we just couldn't narrow down the choices. Right now we have parents and brothers in Kansas, Kentucky, Virginia and (in a couple weeks) North Carolina. Quite spread apart, as you can see. We learned recently, though, that Stuart's parents are more or less planning to move to North Carolina when they retire. My parents have lived in Kentucky for almost 25 years, and they don't appear to be going anywhere. So now it looks like we can narrow our options, mostly likely, to one of those two places.

In two years, Anya will be nearly pre-school age, and I might be able to look for at least a part-time job or some more independent work accompanying and teaching. In two years, Stuart will have enough experience to feel comfortable looking for a job he'd really like to have. Maybe in two years the economy won't suck so much and we'll be able to FIND jobs and sell our house at something other than a loss. Two years is about as long as we can last in this 900 sq ft house before our family of four truly outgrows it. So we're thinking two years from now is our goal, our deadline.

Here's where the knitting part comes in. I took a hard look at the stash, and I don't want to move all of it. For one thing, I don't want to see it all in one place and admit how much I've got, and I certainly don't want anyone else to see it and think I'm some sort of crazy, irresponsible yarn fiend. For another thing, I want to alleviate my [ever so slight] guilt about having more than I can use. So I'm going to knit from the stash and the stash only and see how much I can use up. This applies even for gift knitting. If I want to knit something for someone else, the yarn must come from the stash. (This is partly because gift knitting has often been how I justify buying yarn, even when I know I won't have time to knit it up in time for that birthday/baby shower/Christmas celebration.) Except for yarns I just can't part with, what can't be used up will be sold or given away.

This means real discipline. This means better planning and prioritizing of projects. This means no trips to the yarn store for no particular reason (that's always dangerous.) This also means I may do some preemptive de-stashing here, so keep your eyes open for some free stuff in the next few weeks.

So that's where it stands. Think I can do it?

I think this will force me to be more honest with myself about how much I can reasonably expect to knit in a certain amount of time. Take this scarf, for instance:

This is quite literally all I have been working on for about three weeks and it's still not done (though I think I'm close). It's not at all difficult or especially large or knit on especially tiny needles; it's just the reality of being a busy lady with two kids and a messy garden that need constant attention. Even with my so-called career on hold, I never get as much knitting time as I'd like.


Anonymous said…
Would you like having a buddy in this endeavor? I've been evaluating the stash and realizing that I have a rather sickening (to me, I know there are plenty of larger stashes out there) amount of yarn, and have been thinking of doing something similar. I've been rather bad about picking up a little bit here and a little bit there recently, and I'm not happy about it. I have plenty of yarn on hand to keep me knitting projects for 2 years (and beyond, probably, sadly).
Suze said…
You bet! I think these efforts are way easier when you've got somebody doing it along with you. Like a running buddy (not that I'm running these days...)

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