Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Fifty Days of Green

Perhaps the only cure for feeling wistful about missing the Sock Madness bandwagon is more sock knitting. It's not as if I lack for patterns, greedy as I am for more. The unofficial earworm song (don't say I didn't warn you) of Sock Madness inspired me last week to cast on Llama Llama Duck by Adrienne Fong using Trekking Maxima. I was knitting along contentedly when a chance remark by Nancy reminded me that Adrienne is one of the featured designers for April Sockdown. Hm! To comply with Sockdown rules I put the Trekking sock on hold...

Trekking Llama Llama Duck wip

... waited for April 1, then cast on a new Llama Llama Duck using Taiyo Sock. Now that I can compare them, I like the look of the Taiyo better than the Trekking – the stitch definition is more pronounced and the gradual color changes echo the advance of spring. I like the hopeful symbolism – and the milder weather.

Taiyo Sock Llama Llama Duck wip

It's been a tough winter at casa Jersey Knitter. The last several months have been badly out of balance and I've been looking forward to some restorative time; also more knitting time. For me the two overlap significantly (although not completely). By happy synchronicity,April 1 my church in conjunction with the Arbor Day Foundation and GreenFaith is focusing on Earth care as a spiritual practice during the 50 days of Eastertide 2013, from Easter Monday, April 1, to Pentecost Sunday, May 19. Part of the spiritual exercise takes the form of daily tips, which I'll be posting here and on my Earth care page. If you're so inclined, you can learn a lot more at the Mission 4/1 Earth website or Facebook page.

I have a feeling some of the daily tips may strike some people as rather ordinary, perhaps even disappointingly so. Perhaps that means one is highly evolved spiritually (woo-hoo!), or perhaps the ordinary-ness of the quotidian is part of the point. Unlike Lent and its traditional privations, which come and go,April 2 Eastertide isn't about giving up something or temporary measures. Rather, it's about making changes for good, both in the positive and the permanent senses. It's as ordinary and as marvelous as a hatched egg – once hatched, there's no getting back inside and caulking up the cracks. It's neither physically possible nor desirable to do so.

The challenge for some – I'm fuzzy on whether it's epistemological or metaphysical – is to recognize the extra-ordinary in the ordinary. That is, to be observant – to keep the faith and also to see into it deeply. For others it's moving from theory to actual practice, finding enough confidence to overcome the inertia, nostalgia, or demand for perfection that reinforces the status quo. That last comes in many guises, not least fear of failure and ridicule. Strange we have made change so dangerous, when it's so natural, ordinary, and happening all around us all the time.

To all this green-ery, I'm going to add a fibery goal: to finish this pair of socks by the deadline, May 31. Deadlines have been eluding me more than usual lately, for needful but frustrating reasons, so I'll be happy if this one sticks.

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