Monday, April 24, 2017


I've started going to yoga again, after a looooong absence.  I love it so much, but I took a really lengthy break from it because--and this seemed like a rational excuse at the time--we got a dog and getting down on the floor makes a dog think it is time to relentlessly lick your face.  In my experience, all dogs think this.  So now, when I try to practice a little between classes (because, ow, I am solidifying) I tiptoe around the catdog's otherwise constantly slumbering self, hoping she won't notice I'm getting down on the floor, but she always notices.  ALWAYS.  That dog sleeps 23.5 hours a day, but just try to get down on the floor and close your eyes for a minute.  Anyway.  So one thing they keep telling me in yoga (and one thing I kept telling my own students, way back in the olden times when I was a yoga teacher myself) is to honor where you are today, right now.  Do your best, appreciate that it is the best you can do, and let it be enough for now.  Spinning this fleece--oh, I found the card that came with the fleece and finally deciphered the fact that it is a Romney/Blue-faced Leicester cross, not that I know what difference that makes--is really making me honor where I am right now.  
Doc handcrafted those wool combs for me using scraps from his shop and a handful of huge and deadly nails, and they are scary and awesome.  I have only viciously stabbed myself in the thumb once, so that feels like success.  The fleece, which, you may remember, I bought at the Finger Lakes Fiber Festival last fall, a big plastic sack of unwashed hair, is soft and lovely and springy and curly.  I washed it carefully, carded and spun some of it woolen-style, and was happy enough with it, but all signs point to a Romney/BFL fleece being best spun worsted-style, which is achieved in part by combing.  I discovered I love combing fleece, and that there is a huge amount of waste, but it won't go to waste around here--more on that later--but somehow, the yarn I spun from the combed nests, with all its springiness notwithstanding, and me all girded up with youtube tutorials about how to spin worsted-style, and this book, was just limp and dead, and pretty depressing.  No springiness at all.  Wah!  Well.  I think I will keep combing, but will spin woolen for awhile more.  I just like the yarn better that way.  Honor where you are right now.  
In non-yarn news, I keep thinking about Sara Berman's Closet.  (If you haven't seen this yet, go check it out.  Click on all the links, they are all totally great.) My closet is ridiculous.  Actually, all my closets are ridiculous.  I spent a few hours yesterday divesting myself of yet more things I don't need.  Child's outgrown orthodontic retainers?  Dented trombone?  Tiny souvenir guitar from somebody else's trip to Tijuana?  Adios.  I doubt I will go the full Sara, but it is good to remember that we are not our stuff.  My memories are not in the things I own, but in me.  Very interesting antique accordion that looks cool, collects dust, and nobody knows how to play?  Bye.  


  1. I laughed at your description of trying to practice yoga. Every dog we've had until Chloe would've done the same thing. But our Chloe? She's very rarely licks. Only if we've been gone on a trip and come home. Then she will lick my face just one lick, as if to tell me welcome home. I'm in the midst of decluttering our closet's too. We have so much stuff . Why is it so hard to get rid of stuff that you know you'll never use again? I think I'm going to have a big garage sale and try to at least recoup something from it all. At least that's the Hubby's plan. I would rather just give it all to the Goodwill and be done with it. Love the combs Doc made for you. Very, very inventive.
    Blessings always, Betsy

  2. I have just taken up yoga this year and love it, though I too have problems trying to practice at home. We have a young cat and any time there are feet or hands moving on the floor, they are pounced on. Love the words about 'honouring where you are today"

  3. My dog would probably be jumping all over me, he loves to play if you are on the floor. Moving finally gave me the incentive to declutter and if I am honest we still have far too much. Love those fearsome combs...

  4. I think your closet looks much more interesting than Sara Berman's closet because I love color. Mine could do with a little clearing out, however, and this has made me want to get started.

  5. Kristen, Thank you so much for the link to Sara Berman's closet and for the suggestion to follow all the links. I enjoyed the video recounting Mrs. Berman's life very moving, funny at times, and poignant. Judith Thurman's article was also well worth reading.