Friday, December 28, 2007

a work in progress!

There it is...partially completed, an afghan lying on the couch that will one day be home, and somehow feeling like an albatross around my neck. Here's how it all began...

About four years ago, we were busy planning to build a new home. It was just after Christmas that year that I began work on a ‘fisherman’ afghan that I planned to complete before we moved in. I recall flying to Texas to visit my sister (Bev) that February and working on my afghan en route.

I actually got it finished, and it looked great on the couch once we were in our new house. That’s when I realized I had a problem! Hubby was used to spreading himself out on the couch and using whatever blanket was handy. We now had only a great room (no family room couch). What was I thinking…putting a cream coloured blanket on the sofa, and then telling him he couldn’t use it, unless he got out of his work clothes? I moved the new afghan to the window seat, where it still is today…

and we just go get it on occasion. But I promised I would make him an appropriate blanket to use when he wasn’t in his ‘Sunday best’ clothes.

So I got to work on a rag quilt, which turned out great! In fact, it looked really good on my other window seat, which I still had no cushion for…

so I decided it would just stay there until I got a proper window seat cushion made. But, that meant he still did not have the blankee I promised him. I would just crochet him another one…dark colours, big hook…that wouldn’t take long! But by then it was nearly summer and he really never needed an afghan (no couch time in the summer!)…so the next year I started his new blanket. It sort of got put on the back burner for a time, and last fall I knew I really had to finish the project. We took a road trip to the Kootenays last September, and in the evenings I would work on the afghan…while he read novels. It was more about finishing the job, then enjoying the task by this time! One evening I noticed my arm was getting quite sore, but I just propped up my elbow and kept hooking. The end was in sight! I finally opened up my huge project, and could not believe what I saw. I had just kept plugging along…row after row (never looking at the whole picture and never counting stitches), and my blanket had increased in size on every row. He thought it was just fine…really didn’t care if it was 4 feet wide at the start and six feet wide at other end! And maybe I should have just thrown the whole thing in the garbage (Vee would have!). But I spent the next day unraveling, and really didn’t feel like starting again. By the time we got home, I had a very sore arm. This continued for a long time…and I found out I had developed tennis elbow from working on that blanket. It got so bad, that I had a useless right arm for months. I couldn't open the door to the mall…or pick up a coffee mug with my right hand. That was one year ago, and it took months to heal.

So this fall I decided to pace myself, and work on the blanket on occasion…I did not want to wreck my arm again. I debated taking the project along on our road trip last month, but couldn't see myself working on the huge, warm blanket in the heat of Arizona, so abandoned that idea. Now I have had this work in progress sitting here in a basket, under the end table and next to the couch for months without ever touching it!

I thought if I left it out as a reminder, I might actually work on it once in awhile. It’s been really busy with Christmas preparations and all, so there just have not been any opportunities. But guess what I did yesterday? I finally pulled out the afghan project and it is now a few inches closer to completion. And barring any unforeseen circumstances, I’m thinking he may get his new afghan in 2008! Meanwhile, there are lots of old blankets he can use (just don’t leave them lying in the great room, because they don’t look so good!).

I'll let you know when my 'work in progress' is complete.


  1. I bought the softest blankie at Costco and I love it even more for being cozy than my rag quilt or any afgan that I've crocheted.
    You need to be given a badge for your sticktoitness. I doubt that I would have finished it either. I'm quite bad at becoming easily discouraged with projects.
    I hope your elbow doesn't notice that you've begun again.

  2. Yes, well, that Vee tends to toss the baby out with the bathwater by times. You showed remarkable patience, Judy, r-e-m-a-r-k-a-b-l-e! Such pretty colors and they blend beautifully with the sofa.

    I really enjoyed catching up with you over the past while. This is the longest I've ever spent at your blog, I think! (I'm usually caught up.)

    Thanks for your well wishes. Everything is coming along as expected so things are looking up.

  3. Congratulations on your are to be commended. I found myself chuckling as I read this however, since through the years I have lived a similar story...but mostly I love to start new projects, leave the unfinished in-process project in a visible basket so I "feel" like I am working on it, and then become more interested in something I probably have about 4 afghans in progress. The good news is that I have an aunt who loves to complete projects, so I am happy to share.



'The ornament of a house is the friends who frequent it.'
~ Ralph Waldo Emerson