Friday, March 16, 2012

Try, Try Again

By Heather

Do you challenge yourself to try new things? Over the past few years, I’ve been challenging myself to learn new hobbies—no biggies (like skydiving or bungee jumping), but little things that broaden my horizons a bit.

Sometimes I fail. Like the year I was determined to learn conversational Spanish. I have a decent Spanish vocabulary, but stringing it together into complete (recognizable) sentences is still out of my grasp.
Scarf I made.

But sometimes I succeed.

Last year I was bound and determine to learn how to crochet. I had learned how to knit, but didn’t do it very well, and it hurt. I have tendonitis in both forearms and cubital tunnel, too—so the double needles did me in after a while. But I love making things with yarn, so I thought crochet might be better suited for me, since it’s just one needle (discovered it’s better but I still have to take lots of breaks).

Well, last March I received a quickie crochet lesson from friend Shelly (you can read about it here), but after that, my crocheting fell by the wayside. Until last December when I rushed out and bought a how-to book, lots of yarn, and more hooks.

Baby blanket I made.
There was a lot of trial and error. Lots of unraveling. Lots of repetition of basic stitches. Lots of going to You Tube for visual help (LOVE You Tube for this!). After a week of solid practice, I finally got the hang (the hook?) of it.

So far I’ve made a couple of bookmarks and hearts, and a baby blanket and a scarf. I still have trouble reading patterns (even after a lesson from friend Judy Clemens), so my goal this year is to continue practicing and learning and making cute things (I’ve started a crochet inspiration board on Pinterest).

Have you tried a new hobby lately?


Lynda said...

Actually, I'm looking for some new crafts/hobbies that I enjoy and can do with my increasing physical limitations. I have always been a very "crafty" person. I have a separate room in my house that is a "craft room", full of supplies for many different types of crafts. Unfortunately, a lot of the things I really enjoyed doing (like painting ceramics with a lot of detail), I can no longer do because of failing eye health, arthritis, etc. My favorite thing for many years was counted cross stitch. I completed hundreds of projects - one large autumn scene took over 500 hours to stitch and looked like a painting. I used cross stitch as a stress reliever - I could start working and the next thing I knew, several hours had passed and I hadn't thought about much of anything. I miss those days and hope I can find something I enjoy as well. Lately I've been doing some scrapbooking, and I make kitty beds and hammocks for local shelters and rescue groups. I'm also thinking about doing some crafts using my photography. Can't imagine life witout hobbies.

Booklady said...

I've not really added any new hobbies recently - (unless riding on the back of my husband's Harley counts). But I do have several hobbies - photography, crochet, scrapbooking, and glass painting. The only problem is that hobbies tend to cut into my reading time so I often have unfinished projects.

Bev said...

I've knitted and crocheted for years and have had the same issue with the pain. I get acupuncture regularly to deal with that and it works beautifully. If all that yarny goodness is enough, now I'm learning to quilt.

Jane Myers Perrine said...

I love the bably blanket and am impessed by your choice to face pain for the sake of creating. You're a stronger woman than I am, Heather! I like to try new stuff--I just don't stick to it very long unless it's more fun than my old stuff.

Aurian said...

Good for you! I learned how to knit at school as a young girl, but don't ask me to do it again! My reading hobby is all consuming, so no interest in new things.

Lizzie said...

I've started blogging. It's something I've wanted to do for a long time; I just wasn't in the right frame of mind to start...but I am now. Once I got over the initial fear of rejection and of having "stupid" things to say and decided to do it for no one else but ME, I loosened up and the words began to flow. I also read more and more blogs which has been a tremendous inspiration to me..this one included!!

I wouldn't object to followers though...I think I am ready!

Heather Blake Webber said...

Lynda, photography fascinates me, too, but I leave that to Mr. W. Not enough time in the day to do everything!

Booklady, the Harley-riding counts! And the glass painting sounds fun.

Bev, I'm a chicken about acupuncture! All those needles... If I can get over that, I'd give it a try.

Aurian, LOL! Reading can be all-consuming, can't it?

Lizzie, congrats! Blogging is a big leap. Keep those words flowing. :)

ev said...

I have started taking interesting cooking classes at my local Drummer's Kitchen. I've always been a decent cook, but am looking for something different and having a blast.

Book Dragon said...

I have a hard time reading patterns to so I stick with stuff that's not fitted, blankets, scarfs, bandages. Some hats but they aren't pretty.

Never could get the hang of knitting but love Counted Cross Stitch. But like others, reading takes up a lot of time ;) so does blogging.

Would love to see a picture of your bookmarks and hearts.

Yves Fey said...

I haven't crocheted in years, but I enjoyed it when I did. Do Granny Squares! They are easy and you can make afghans, sweaters, all sorts of things.

Susan L. said...

I'm researching quilting. I've pinned countless examples on Pinterest, but still feel completely lost. I walked into my local JoAnn's a few days ago to try to figure out what I would need to get started, and I applaud the employees there, one of which who took the time to sort through my cluelessness to find me a book with quilting basics. I want to make my son a quilt for when he gets his "big boy" bed, though.