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Utilitarian Sewing

The sum total of my sewing lately, fixing the blown-out crotch in a pair of the husband's work pants:

I was too lazy to put black thread in the machine. He doesn't care. These pants are on their way out, but at least now they'll last until the legs disintegrate. 

I pat my machines as I walk by and tell them how much I miss them, but I've somehow managed to shove sewing and other creative pursuits to the back of my mind. There is no time for them and thus I have just made up my mind that there is no sense pining away for something I can't have right now. Sometimes my capacity for self-discipline amazes even me. I doubt I could sustain this lack of creativity for a long period of time, but I can do it until September. 

Our delegation to church conferences is notable not only for the fact that we're usually coming from the furthest point (although the church from Anchorage sent a delegation this year and so we lost out to them) but also for the fact that we sit and knit through all the meetings. At the meeting last week, Elaine was working on a scarf and Joann and I were both making prayer shawls. Occasionally, someone from another church brings something to work on, but Mountain View's knitters have developed a reputation for consistent multi-tasking. It is remarked on by at least a couple of people at every conference. I fear that I must shoulder some of the blame for the appearance of knitting in our church. Not too long after I started attending MVMC, our pastor announced that an upcoming Sunday School class was going to be a video series. I don't watch a lot of TV and I am almost physically incapable of watching TV without having something to work on. I started bringing my knitting to Sunday School. Other people followed suit. It got to the point where there were some Sundays that we had at least a couple of people knitting their way through church. Our pastor doesn't mind—he said that looking out during the sermon and seeing people knitting was far better than seeing people sleeping. (I don't knit in church because as the pianist, I am up in front and I don't really think it's appropriate for me, but I don't care what other people do.) We even created an "emergency knitting bag," with a prayer shawl project in it so that if someone showed up at church having forgotten their knitting, we could provide them with something to work on. (That has been great for visitors.) I haven't knit anything besides prayer shawls for about the last eight years, but I have churned out quite a few of them just from my "sitting in meetings" time.

I wish I could develop a fondness for English paper piecing because then I could have something sewing/quilting related to work on instead of knitting. I just can't do it. I have kicked around the idea of taking up wool embroidery, but I am not sure I need Yet Another Hobby. Knitting is like breathing for me—I don't have to think about it—and it serves well for occupying my hands so my mind can focus on the meeting topic. 

The Presbyterian church where we had our meetings in Boise had a quilt rack positioned in the hallway with about a dozen prayer shawls on it and a sign above inviting anyone to take a shawl as needed. I thought that was a great idea. Ours are available to anyone, as well, but they aren't out on display. Perhaps we need to consider that. 

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