Jan 08

Choice 2012 : Admissions

Kindle Fire screenshot

I’m starting this post a bit unsure whether I’m even going to publish it, but I really feel like I have to write it — if for no other reason than to have something to re-read when I’m feeling anxious about a choice.

Before I get to all that, I have to tell you — I got a Kindle Fire for Christmas and I absolutely love it. The screen shot above was taken with my cell phone while I was sampling a magazine. I still have my original Kindle and won’t part with it, because it’s still ideal for me when I want to log several hours reading straight text. I wanted the Fire for cookbooks, knitting books, magazines and knitting patterns. I wasn’t sure I would try the apps, watch videos or use it to go online. But I was excited that I would get to listen to the music I had purchased from Amazon and I’ve used that feature a lot. Battery power is amazing — I watched an entire season of Downton Abbey yesterday and didn’t need to charge it until the final episode. So now, not only do I have all my books at my fingertips, I also have music, videos, magazines and personal documents. I still tend to rarely use the apps (not its strong point) with the exception of Evernote — which I use as a reference, and not to generate new notes. I could go on and on about it and probably will — another day.

2011 caused a bit of a tailspin for me and I was determined going in to 2012 that I would never have a repeat of most of those 365 days if I had anything to say about it. Throughout the year, I tried to focus on the good things in my midst and in looking, I usually found them in abundance. But the lingering feeling was that so much was happening that was out of my control and all I could do was react and adapt. Often, I did it without much grace, but I did it. I survived 2011. But I wanted to start 2012 from a position of more control and peace, and began to see ways in which I was undermining my sense of control — habits that I’d acquired that directly impacted my sense of inner peace.

It’s all about input. It’s about what I set before myself. What I put IN directly affects what comes out. I’ll back up by saying that I do tend to enjoy a good conflict, a conspiracy theory, a great debate. But for this illustration, let’s focus JUST on what’s online for a moment. There are a handful of blogs that I read (not listed in my sidebar because I don’t visit them often and you’re about to find out why) for “trainwreck” value. They aren’t people I know or have met in real life — or even want to know! But I suppose I read them for a sense of relief that I don’t have it quite as bad as they do. On the other hand, I read some excellent blogs written by people I admire, have met, see regularly, or if I don’t know them personally, I really WANT to. I probably don’t let them know often enough how grateful I am that they continue to write and share through their blogs. So I made a choice this year to visit those blogs more, but the others — the ones written by people I don’t know and whose values I don’t share (even though I’ve been reading some of them for over 7 years!) — I’m stopping. I already feel a lot more peace.

The other thing — and said this to myself many times — knitting is not my job. I’m not a slave to my Ravelry queue or my fiber stash. I can knit what I want, whenever I want, without explanation whenever the mood strikes me. I do have some deadlines and commitments to knit things as gifts or as part of a group effort, but that’s pure enjoyment. I’m just done feeling guilty (and this is inner guilt — not anything that anybody has imposed upon me). I can CHOOSE to do something about yarn that hasn’t become what I wanted it to be (release it), projects that haven’t turned out the way I wanted (frog them!) or tools that have become redundant (cull!): no more arbitrary rules for my knitting or unproductive goal setting. I’ve already told myself that I can start as many new things as I want to, and it’s interesting that giving myself permission has led to more sensible choices than I thought I would ever make. I will share more about that throughout the year.

I know that this is just a blog and only a tiny glimpse of the person behind it, but thank you for visiting here and leaving comments. So few people blog anymore, but I still value this medium very much and I appreciate you.



  1. O-chica says:

    Thank you for sharing your thought with us. Your blog posts always give me inspirations and broaden my mind. I wish you and your family loads of happy moments this year.

  2. gail says:

    “But I wanted to start 2012 from a position of more control and peace, and began to see ways in which I was undermining my sense of control ā€” habits that Iā€™d acquired that directly impacted my sense of inner peace.”

    Thank you for putting this so concisely, Janet. I’ve been feeling the same in 2012; taking a look at habits that are holding me back, and making the choice to work on it. Maybe there’s something in the air? Maybe 2012 will be a better year for all of us?

    Glad to have you back – I really enjoy your blog!

  3. Andi says:

    Excellent words! They were refreshing to read. I too vowed that I was going to relearn to love knitting for enjoyment. I think 2012 is going to be a turning point from a lot of negative in 2011. Sending love and strength to you and your family!

  4. carol says:

    What a refreshing post! Your post about choice also inspired me. May we all have a positive, happy 2012 ! Thank you for your blog. šŸ™‚

  5. Jessica says:

    It’s always good to know where you stand and it sounds like, now, you’re standing in a good place.

    I wish you luck with 2012 and I hope you enjoy your knitting even more!

  6. Maryse says:

    That’s right! You are the boss! Happy 2012!

  7. Misty says:

    Wow, I am inspired by your statement that knitting is not your job. I often turn the things I love into work. It’s hard for me not to feel burdened by knitting and my other hobbies and the number of unfinished projects I have. Maybe “________ is not my job” should be my mantra every time I start turning my fun into work. šŸ™‚

  8. I can totally understand how you feel. I have 2 blogs to manage — one for my own adventures and the other for my knitting/crochet customers.

    Sometimes it’s easy to get overwhelmed. Time to step back and refocus (that’s me reminding myself too!)

    Good luck!

  9. kristin says:

    I know exactly how you feel about those trainwreck blogs. I often find myself reading the blogs of people I don’t like for the very same reasons you do, and I finally had to block those sites from my computer so I wouldn’t be tempted. I went through the same thing a few years ago with gossip websites – gossip is horrible, so why was I supporting it? Anyway, good for you! Here’s to a very happy 2012.

  10. erin says:

    Such a brave and honest post, Janet. I often have these thoughts but I find it difficult to put them in words and I also fear being misunderstood etc etc. That’s why I appreciate what you’ve said here.
    And I’m also feeling more guilt free lately about the fact that I knit and about my yarn and my magazines šŸ™‚ As the Cliff Richard song (Power to all our friends) goes, “baby power to you and me!”

  11. Stacey says:

    I am always glad to see a post from you because I am sure to learn something, so thank you for continuing to blog.

  12. Dorothy says:

    I think I could have written you post. I am so guilty of the “train wreck” mentality. Maybe it makes me feel superior, but whatever the reason, I, too am going to make a resolution to be more positive in what I put into my head. I tend to watch a lot of crime shows and I need to cull those down. They make the world seem so much more dangerous than it really it. And I will enjoy knitting what I want. I’m embarking on an ambitious project that I know would put other knitters in the loony bin, but it’s MY decision and MY knitting. I will not accept from others that I’m crazy!

  13. Debbie Deatherage says:

    It is a little odd that the very thing we choose to do to take us away ends up being the very thing weighing us down. It IS time to take back the power that we always had. Life is too short to go through it so overwhelmed. Good to hear about “The Fire” in your hand (and in your belly!). šŸ˜‰

  14. Kristen says:

    Thank you for writing this post. I will probably join you in re-reading it for reference. So many of the sentiments and resolves mirror mine, but so very nicely written.

  15. Sallie says:

    Excellent post, Janet.

  16. Mary says:

    I’ve been reading your blog for several years because you’ll write posts like this (and because I love to see what color you’re painting your nails šŸ™‚ seriously, you inspire me to be a better person and a better knitter. I, like you, am struggling about knitting NOT being my job… thank you for sharing your insights on how to change!

  17. SoKnitpicky says:

    This post is another example of why I loved reading your blog even before I met you. It reminds me of my computer geeking days, when people would say GIGO, garbage in, garbage out. Having better input leads to better results šŸ˜‰

  18. Brenda says:

    Best wishes, Janet, for a wonderful 2012!

    2011 wasn’t the best year for me either, but I think 2012 has some real possibilities. I would like to blog more this year. I try to keep it very positive, and I almost use it as an exercise in finding the positive even when things don’t seem t be going well.

  19. Jerri says:

    I loved this post, Janet. I’ve tried to stop clicking ‘train wreck’ angles all around, including news and also limit what I follow. I think the latter is partially a result of a conversation we had a year ago about ‘noise’ and the opportunity cost of being so involved in others [expressionism] that we execute less on our own vision.

    Even limiting what I read or who follow, I still do think it manages to slow down my own progress more because I get lost in the rabbit hole, but I’m working on setting more boundaries.

  20. Marion says:

    I enjoy your blog; I hope you continue it. Happy 2012!

  21. […] Patterns « Choice 2012 : Admissions […]

  22. Linda W. says:

    Kudos on getting back to school. Come by my office in A200K and let’s talk knitting!
    We are planning a knit in next month at the college…

  23. funessa says:

    Hey stranger! I’ve been randomly checking my favorite blogs lately, and I just HAD to comment on this post! Sounds like lots of GOOD changes are underway for you in the new year, and I love your renewed focus on positivity, and also going easier on yourself regarding knitting! With the abundance of knitting blogs and the endless projects available on Ravelry, it’s very easy to get overwhelmed/consumed by the number of projects you could be / should be / wish you were working on, and I know I definitely struggle with that myself! But it sounds like you have the right perspective. We just need a little reminder sometimes. šŸ™‚
    Also excited to see you’re going back to school! This has been on my mind A LOT lately, so I’m excited to see someone else has jumped in and taken the plunge! I’m sure you’ll have a BLAST!
    OK, well, I’m rambling… Just wanted to say hi!!! XOXO, Vanessa


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