I’ve been knitting. Very very slowly. And sewing. Equally slowly. I’m still knitting my mother-in-law’s Christmas socks and I’ve even resorted to stashing the needles and yarn for H’s second pair of Christmas socks in the glove box of my car in the hope that in the occasional moment when both tiny girls snooze, or I can persuade H to drive, I may produce a pair of socks sometime this side of next Christmas.
For me, knitting, sewing, writing, baking and taking pictures are part of my keystone. They are the way I recharge to be able to give the very best of myself in all the other areas of life, after all, it’s hard not to feel that all’s well with the world when you’re curled up on the sofa, baby girl asleep in your lap, big sister snoozing upstairs, putting the final touches to a little girl’s Christmas stocking, and noshing a fresh homemade bagel.
But I had wondered what effect two babies would have on my space for creativity, and whether in giving myself over wholeheartedly to being their Mama the thing that would have to give would be that precious keystone. In practice? Well I’m taking just as many photos as ever, I still find the odd moment to write, and I’m really enjoying trying to teach Kitty to bake, even if the chief lesson absorbed so far involves rather more of the merits of raw cake mix and bread dough than might be ideal. The knitting may be going at a snail’s pace and my sewing machine is currently buried under a small avalanche of laundry (clean) but they’re there.
When I was expecting Kitty I saw a maternity t-shirt with the slogan “I’m so crafty, I make people”. (and by ‘saw’ I mean, spotted on the interwebs, craved, longed for, but ultimately allowed my head to rule my heart in the matters of international shipping).
I’m still a little in awe of my body for its ability to nurture and give birth to two gorgeous little girls but ultimately I’m finding I don’t need that slogan in a maternity shirt so much as on an array of shirts for the next howevermany years.
I may not get so much time to knit or sew or write, or even to blog as I used to, and if you offered me Hermione’s Time Turner for 24 hours I’d borrow it in a heartbeat (first time turn; a bath by myself – although perhaps I’d miss the patter of tiny feet and the smiley face running in to ask “what doing Mummy?”) but it doesn’t mean I’m not being creative.
Every day with two tiny people is a chance to help them grow, to teach them not only the basics; ovens are hot, stairs should be respected, baby sisters are not for colouring in, or sweeping with the dustpan and brush; but to foster in them a love of the things that will in turn drive their creativity, be it reading, drawing, making music or one day even a little knitting.
I can’t be the only one taught the crafts that became my passions by my parents and grandparents. Dad read me Swallows and Amazons
and then set me loose on the rest of the series, Mum taught me to embroider, to sew, to knead bread and bake a cake and Grannie taught me to knit. Without them, and those skills, my life would definitely be a poorer place.
And if that means that instead of curling up with one of my Christmas books and good hunk of cake, I’m reading and re-reading The Worst Princess
until I find I’m declaiming it to the washing up, (and it’s a great book; the washing up was honoured), or trying to fend off repeated attempts to add porridge oats to a lemon sponge mix, then that’s more than OK; these moments will not come again.
So is this a craft blog? Oh yes. I’m so crafty I’m making people.