Welcome to Cranky Puppy Farm!

This blog belongs to two Gen X-er's smackdab in downtown Kansas City where we've been renovating and decorating two old Victorians built in the 1890's. Our life is filled with 3 demanding Pomeranians (1 of them cranky, of course), honking cars, noisy neighbors and the hustle and bustle of city life but we dream of the day when we can move to our 40-acre farm and hear nothing but the wind and the cows next door. Until then, we're chronicling our triumphs and mishaps here as we try to garden and preserve on 2 city lots, raise chickens, and learn all those things we should have learned from our grandparents. Welcome to our world - we hope you'll stay awhile!

Knit One, Purl Two

Tuesday, January 08, 2013

Evening, everyone!  I've jumped in with both feet on my goal list and signed up for two knitting classes at JoAnn's and the first one was tonight.

There were four other ladies in the class and I think just about everyone had knitted before except me.  I've never even touched a knitting needle.  We started with Linda, the instructor, teaching us the secret to unrolling a skein of yarn - pull out the short cut end, then stick your hand in the middle of the other end of the skein and fish around until you find the ball of yarn that's stuffed in there.  Pull it out and you're ready to start knitting.

Then we learned how to "cast on" (loading the first loops on the knitting needles).  I was fine with the knit stitch but then she really screwed me up with purl, which is basically a reverse knit stitch.

So I happily spent most of the 3 hours trying to perfect knit and will have to work on purl before the class next Tuesday.  In that one, we're supposed to use knit and purl to make a hat.  I'd like to have it at least look like a hat and not some kind of demented whale's tail.  There's no way I'm showing you what I made tonight as it's downright embarrassing.

I just finished reading a book called "Outliers" by Malcolm Gladwell that I highly recommend you pick up at the local library.  It's a very quick read and it's one of those books that makes you go "hmmm".  The premise of the book is that decision that we make every day, or random societal rules, can either positively or negatively influence your or someone else's life.  For example, did you know that most professional hockey players are born in the first 4 months of the year?  That where your pilot was born can influence whether you survive a plane crash?  Why are Asians better at math than Americans?  I don't want to give it away just in case you have a chance to read the book, but the author provides statistical information and real life stories in answer to these questions.  It will definitely make you think.

Anyway, the reason I brought up that book is because one of the chapters is about expertise...in anything. How long do you think it takes for someone to become an expert?  Have you ever thought about that?  Gladwell has interviewed people in many areas:  music, dance, business, etc. to try to get an answer to that question.  The concensus is that it takes 10,000 hours, or roughly 10 years of practice.

Rome wasn't built in a day and I'm sure my knitted hat won't be either.  I've got 3 hours down and 9,997 more to go before.

In the meantime...is this woman for real?
G'night, my friends!


  1. I read Outliers a few years back and found it very interesting. Especially the math one - that made so much sense!

  2. Gee, I thought that was YOU in the picture, S!

    I would love to learn to knit, but don't think I'm patient enough. My sister sure could.

    Just read Kerin's post and am really down in the dumps tonight.


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