Learning new stuff...

This is a picture of my "SIDEWAYS SOCK" that I love for a few reasons: I'm not a giant fan of rib or knitting on 4 needles. Because the leg of this sock is knit in garter stitch on 2 needles, grafted then stitches are picked up around an edge to create the basis for the foot of the sock, I figure that the sock is at least 1/3 done by the time I have to use the 4 needles and I never have to rib at all yet they stay up really well.

This picture is here to advertise the new segment of this site where you can click on to the title "WOOL-TYME Kingston FREE PATTERNS" to the right>>> to take you to a selection of free patterns that we have offered through the newsletter over the past year. Please feel free to print them, make the projects, use them with my blessing. But as it says at the top of the pattern page, please contact me for permission before using the pattern in a publication (paper or on the internet) or before making the items for sale. Please enjoy them and let me know if you come across any typos or cut&paste glitches. (I set them all up quite quickly. Some things may have gotten by me.)

One of my customers was in on Saturday after having seen the blog. While we were discussing it she said: "You're having lots of fun with this, aren't you?" And I had to agree.

But more importantly I was struck by how much I had learned about the world of blogs, digital cameras, high speed internet service and computer lore in general in the past month. Seriously, I was shocked to realize that it was on the first weekend of May when I was in Toronto on a buying trip for the store, that one of the other knitting store owners was saying how important her blog was to the life of her store and convinced me that it really was an easy enough task to squeeze into my overcrowded brain.

So how do we define the angle of a learning curve? There's no question that if I had run into half of the difficulties that other computer tasks have given me in the past (like learning the evil ways of a new accounting program, or even a clip art file for instance) I'm sure that I would have given up after an hour and missed out on how enjoyable this experience is. What makes something worth the effort if we don't know the outcome? I don't have an answer but it is an interesting question.
I'm always amazed by the people who have never held knitting needles in their hands before, yet decide that that is what they want to do...and do it ridiculously well from the very beginning.
However, I'm more awed and humbled by those who don't get it at all right at the beginning, who must struggle to remember to put the yarn to the front or to the back when going from knit to purl and back. The people who come back week after week with "design features" in their first projects that were not intended by the pattern designer, the ones who struggle with just holding the needles and yarn yet still persist: these are the people that I really admire. As I've learned this week, I'm grateful when a new skill comes easily, but I appreciate it even more (especially in others) when it's hardwon.