Be Kind to Yourself

How are you all doing? Do you find yourself going back and forth with emotions and outlook? Because I sure do.

  • Some days I think this way of life will never end. Other days, I can look forward to future gatherings and trips with friends and keep it all in perspective. And you know what? Both of those views and all of those feelings are ok.
  • Some days I pick projects and yarn and can’t wait to get home from work to knit and other days I get home and scroll on my phone without getting any knitting done. And both of those things are ok.
  • Some days we eat healthy and get plenty of exercise and other days we make popcorn for dinner and don’t do much. And both of those things are ok.
  • Some days I think we need to open the shop back up for in-store customers immediately, and other days I think I can’t see us ever opening up again and feeling safe. And all of those feelings are ok.

I don’t ever remember having my feelings and actions swing so wildly from one end of the spectrum to the other. But I have learned to not be too hard on myself. If I need a night of cat pictures on my phone, then that’s what my brain needs. If I need a night of starting all of the projects and adding more to my queue, then that’s what my brain needs. I’m going with the flow. It’s all good.

Be kind to yourself. Give yourself plenty of leeway. It’s a weird time and you’re adapting as best you can. Things will get better. People still care. There’s lots of beauty in the world.

For me – I’m going to play in the Malabrigo Rios today so we can get it ready for Monday’s Update. I’m also looking forward to a long holiday weekend. I’ll probably do some knitting, check out some cat pictures, and take a long walk with Paul. How about you? What’s on your weekend schedule?

We’ll be back in on Tuesday to ship Saturday/Sunday/Monday orders. I hope you all have a relaxing weekend filled with good things.

Stay safe, take care, and remember to be kind to yourself. There are better days ahead.


Knitting Group – Why Join One?

Do you belong to a knitting group? We love our Thursday Night Knitters (and our Wednesday Afternoon Stitchers) and look forward to seeing them every week. We appreciate being a Third Place (the place you love to go, after home and work). We always love having you here, whether in person or online!

Top Ten Reasons to Join a Knitting Group

  1. You meet new people who love what you love (yarn and knitting!).
  2. You can get impromptu help if your project is going sideways.
  3. You can find someone to demo the German Twisted Cast On (or other interesting cast ons, cast offs, and stitches).
  4. You are surrounded by people who want to know about your latest yarn purchase, your current project, and the number of WIPs you have.
  5. You can find help in fixing mistakes (because we all make them).
  6. You can get opinions on colors that do or don’t go together.
  7. You see lots of inspiring knitwear on the people in your group.
  8. You find out about new “must make” patterns to add to your queue.
  9. You hear about new shows to binge-watch, audiobooks to listen to, movies to go to, and places to see.
  10. If you’re in our Loopy Group, you find out about things like Clicklist, Butter Braids, Contact Juggling, Tootsie Troughs, and Food Trucks.

If you don’t have your own local group, please join us remotely! You can be knitting on Thursday nights with your project and your favorite beverage, and know that we’re knitting along with you in our neck of the woods! I sometimes share Thursday night Instagram stories of some of the projects being worked on, or photos of our group. (We usually have 15-25 people here every Thursday night.) And we’d love to see you and your projects, too. Tag us on instagram (#virtualloopyknitnight or #loopyknitnight), or email us a photo, or post it on Ravelry or Facebook, and let us know you’re a part of our group in your own home. We’d love to connect with you!

Sheri and the Knit Night Crew

Loopy Lately

We’ve been busy around here, packing up fabric orders and helping in-store fabric customers. (Did you hear that we’re closing out fabric and growing our yarn shop?) We are condensing down the shelves of fabrics, moving empty shelves out, and opening more space up on the floor. I keep trying to think of a way to just take that whole Kona wall home with me. I had to settle for getting half yards of a lot of the colors. I love Kona.

We have such gorgeous quilts for sale, that were part of our Strip Clubs! (I already brought several quilts home to my house. I love having quilts made by the Loopy Elves.) Do you see one that you need? You can call us and inquire about them. We can ship to you!

It’s sad to see the fabric going, but it’s also exciting to see the new yarn making its way in! The stockroom is filling up with boxes of yarn. Of course we still need to make room for it on the floor, but everyone is working hard through this transition. The Loopy Elves are amazing.

Speaking of the Loopy Elves, Elf Cheryl made this delicious Spaghetti Salad this fall, and shared the recipe with me. It’s so good – a taste of smoky bacon in there. Might be just what you need this weekend.

Cheryl’s Spaghetti Salad

1 pound spaghetti noodles, cooked al dente
1 pound bacon, cooked crisp and crumbled
3 green onions, chopped
3 very ripe, large beefsteak tomatoes
3 cloves of garlic, minced
salt and pepper to taste
Mayonnaise (not salad dressing)

Put tomatoes in a large pot of water. Bring to a boil and then turn the heat down to simmer, so the skins come off and the tomatoes are heated through.

Cook spaghetti and drain. Place in a large bowl with bacon, green onions, salt, pepper, and garlic. Mix well.

When tomatoes are ready, remove one at a time from the water. Remove the skins and center core. Chop up and add to the bowl. Add mayo as needed. (If your tomatoes are really juicy, you might only need a couple of tablespoons of mayo.)

Serve hot or cold.

Hope you all have a great weekend!


Exercises for Knitters

Have you been joining us on Wednesdays and Thursdays for our Facebook Live posts? They’re fun to do and we love seeing your names pop up as we are filming! We’ve missed a couple of different days in the Live filming for one reason or another, but most of the time we’re there at noon, Mountain Time.

This week, we did a video on neck and shoulder stretches for knitters. I’m doing the talking and Lynn (Loopy Office Manager) is doing the exercise modeling!

Last week, we did a video on hand and wrist stretches for knittings. 

You can find all of our past videos under the Videos tab on our Facebook page.

If you’re not on Facebook, here is a list of the exercises that we featured (originally shared online by Pam Allen and Shannon Okey and other miscellaneous sources). Repetitive tasks such as sewing, stitching and knitting can create stress on the muscles and joints in our wrists and hands, neck and shoulders. Stretching frequently certainly helps.

Neck and Shoulder – do these exercises before, during and after knitting or sewing. Always hold the stretch 5-20 seconds, so the muscles get a good pull, and repeat each exercise several times:

  1. Tilt your head forward to gently stretch the back of your neck and hold.
  2. Turn your head to one side and look over your shoulder and hold. Repeat on the other side.
  3. Tilt your head to one shoulder (ear down to shoulder) and hold. Repeat on the other side.
  4. Bring your shoulders up to your ears and hold. Then relax and push shoulders down towards the floor.
  5. Interlace your fingers and stretch your arms out in front of you (palms facing away) and hold.
  6. Keep your fingers interlaced and reach your arms over your head (palms facing up) and hold.
  7. Interlace your fingers and cup the back of your head, then push elbows back (imagining that you are trying to get your shoulder blades to touch back there) and hold.
  8. Place your right hand on your left shoulder. With your left hand, grab your right arm just above the elbow and look over your right shoulder. While looking over your shoulder, use your left hand to gently pull your right arm to the left until you feel the muscle stretch. Hold. Repeat on the other side.
  9. Place your hands in the small of your back and stretch your shoulders backward, trying to make your elbows touch and hold.

Hand and Wrist – do these exercises before, during and after knitting or sewing. Always hold the stretch 5-20 seconds, so the muscles get a good pull, and repeat each exercise several times:

  1. Hold your fingers up in the air and gently spread your fingers apart. Hold, and then bring them back together.
  2. Hold your hands upright, fingers apart. Draw your fingers into a light fist with your thumbs on the outside. Hold, and then return to the regular position.
  3. Put your hands in the “thumbs up” position and gently rotate your thumbs in circles in one direction and then another.
  4. Hold your hands upright with your fingers spread comfortably apart. Touch your thumbs to the tips of the littlest finger and then open your hand back up. Next, touch your thumbs to your ring fingers, and then open them back up. Then your middle fingers, and back. And your index fingers and back.
  5. Rest your forearms on the edge of a table or on the arms of a chair, so that your wrists are supported but your fingers dangle. Bend your wrist back and then lift your hands and arms toward you.
  6. Rest your forearms on the edge of a table or arms of a chair with your thumbs pointed up. Move your wrists up and down through their full range of motion.
  7. Hold your right hand out, palm facing up. With your left hand, grasp the fingers from your right hand and pull down and hold. Repeat on the other hand.

Here is another good reference for stretching muscle fascaie (and why it is important).

Of course practicing good posture (a strong core is helpful here) and changing sitting positions will also help. You might also consider resting your arms on a pillow on your lap, if your chair doesn’t have armrests to support your arms while you knit.

Leave us a comment below if you have other exercises that you do for hands, wrists, neck and shoulders. We want to keep all of those areas healthy and happy!

Sheri tryingtogetintotheregularroutineofdoingthese