Last night I went through my blog and read a lot of my old posts. It got me in the mood for the holiday season and also for some colder weather (yes, seriously, colder weather. It seems more fitting to be knitting when it's actually a little nippy outside). November seems to be the kick off the real knitting months for me. The weather has already started to get cooler and holiday knitting is in full swing. After the holidays the real cold weather will settle in (maybe even snow!) and I can get revitalized for the upcoming year. Usually this is the time when I get excited again about all my charity knitting projects. Just last week I was wondering what the next contest for Warm Woolies was going to be. My plans have all been wrecked though. I found out this weekend that Warm Woolies, my favorite charity to knit for, will be ceasing operations at the end of this year. I'm so heartbroken. There isn't another organization like them, that I know of, out there. They sent items to the Native American Indian reservations out west and to orphanages in Eastern Europe and Russia. I think there are other groups that service the reservations that will pick up the slack but so few places are able or willing to send items to orphanages overseas. It's expensive and can be difficult with customs but I think it really needs to be done. I know there are lots of people in need here in the States that I could help support. I have a friend who runs Knits for Needs and I hope I'll able to donate to that cause in the future. I know I can also find other groups or contact orphanages directly but Warm Woolies was so convenient. Plus, it's just distressing that the economy has even started effecting charities. All this got me thinking about the upcoming holiday season and how so many families here will have to go without and that got me thinking about the people overseas who never even had to begin with and...it's a vicious cycle...All this coming at the end of an already tough (in a personal sense) fall. Le sigh.
As we enter into this holiday season I think I can take one of two stances: I can wallow in pity and allow things to overwhelm me or I can be eternally grateful for what I do have and more determined to help where I can. I'm choosing to do the latter. I read a great poem yesterday on the Craftivisim blog (you can find it here) that was really eye opening. It was great for me to read. The last thing I should do it throw in the towel. Now I've found the fire again for helping others and seeing the good in life, no matter how small it may seem. In light of all that I've made a list...
Things that Make Me Happy in Tough Times (a.k.a. My Plan to Recession Happiness):
1. Knitting- In the words of the late, great Elizabeth Zimmerman, "Knit on, with confidence and hope, through all crises." Knitting makes me happy, therefore, I will do it more.
2. My cat- I guess this means I will keep feeding her and giving her treats. Even at 6:00 in the morning on a Saturday.
3. My family- No one makes me laugh harder or feel better.
4. A meal with good friends- Screw the diet.
5. My religion- It's comforting to know there is someone greater looking out for me.
6. Chocolate- I will eat more of this. Screw the diet.
7. Reading knitting blogs, magazines, and books- I try and do this daily.
8. Dyeing yarn- It's labor intensive and time consuming but it's still awesome.
9. Doing something for someone else- Pay it forward dudes.
I know that you probably have your own list of things that you do. I hope that over the next couple of months that you'll think about what you are thankful for and then go do #9, pay it forward. Don't worry how big or small your contribution may seem. You do what you can and be thankful that you can give anything at all. God bless! And dudes...keep knitting :)