When It’s Not Quite Winter

Despite the lovely thick snow you saw in my post of three weeks back, the weather we’re having these days is actually very mild. Once the snow melted (the next day), winter made a half-hearted try at establishing its grip with a series of quickly melted flurries. The sun returned, and while some days have been cold, we haven’t seen snow since.

Still, we waited, expecting any day now to wake to freezing white, and as a result we missed quite a few cool, clear days that we could have been spending outside. This morning we went out to pick up an electric keyboard from a friend (I mentioned to her that I wanted to buy one, and she said, “OH! I have one in my closet I bought last year that I never play. Would you like it?” Yes, yes I would.) and the weather was just gorgeous. Bright, warm sun, and if the wind was a little biting, what do you expect in December? So I decided on the fly to take the boys to the playground after we finished our errands. Determined that I would let them play as long as they wanted, I ducked by the Arts and Crafts Store for some yarn and a hook to keep me busy. We also ran by the commissary to get some Lunchables and milk, and we headed off to the playground for our “special happy fun surprise” playtime. The boys were ecstatic, and content that I’d made a happy decision for all of us, I sat down to begin my project. The hook I’d selected was an L hook. (You never see those. I didn’t already own one, and I thought Hey! I bet an L would be useful.) The only yarn I really wanted was some pretty Wool-Ease in Cocoa, so I decided to try double-stranding. First order of business: find the ends.

The hunt for the first end produced a fairly standard glob of yarn barf, quickly untangled and wound back around the outside of the skein. The second one, though…I had to practically disembowel the second skein to find the center pull. I’m serious. I’m pretty sure that more than half of the yarn ended up in my lap during my epic struggle with this demonic ball of wool-ease. I started to think I should have just worked off the outside, but by this point there’s no going back. I had giant snarls of yarn draped across my legs, blowing onto the ground when the wind gusted. Max came over.

“Oh, no, Mommy! Your yarn is blowing away!”

“It’s okay, honey. It’s not going anywhere. I don’t even think I can go anywhere.”

So, I started trying to wind it back onto the skinny, hollow shell of the skein. I quickly realized that this was not going to be a straightforward affair, and tried to focus on the tangles. I was hindered in several ways – the kids, for one. They needed a lot of help with their milk cartons, and the wind kept almost blowing their Lunchables off the table, and Max succeeded in getting onto the tire swing all by himself for the first time ever, resulting in fifteen minutes of him yelling, “Look! I did it! Look at me! I got up all by myself! Watch! Mommy, look! Look at me swinging! Take a picture of meeeeeee!” (Sadly I did not have the camera with me,or you can bet I would have.) The wind kept blowing my yarn, around, too, but the most crippling factor was my frozen fingers.

It wasn’t really that cold outside – almost fifty degrees, actually – and the sun was bright and warm. When the wind was blowing, though (which was most of the time), it was sharp and cold enough to chill small appendages in just a few minutes. The boys were fine, since they were jumping up and down and running around with a will – and besides, even if their fingers did get a little cold, how much manual dexterity do you need to go down a slide? (Answer: not much.) I, on the other hand, was constantly having to stop and stuff my fingers up my sleeve so that they could regain enough function for me to continue undoing the epic tangle. I went at it from both ends, winding what I could get back onto the skein while I searched the snarls for that elusive, dangling end responsible for this mess in the first place.

Once I found it things went a little faster. The skein is meant to be pulled from that direction, after all. Still, by the time I had gotten all of the tangles undone and wound either on the skein or into the ball I started with the end, it had been an hour and a half and Charlie was starting to cry about nothing. Stupid yarn.

Stupid yarn.

So, we headed for home, me with absolutely nothing started. I have learned my lesson, though – clearly, I need a pair of fingerless gloves.

Oh, and the piano?

Aren't they adorable?

Is a massive hit. I can’t peel them off of it.


  1. Lauria says:

    Haha, as soon as you mentioned the biting wind I thought “FINGERLESS GLOVES. YOU NEED FINGERLESS GLOVES!!!” I’m glad that you came to the same conclusion, but I’m sorry that your adventure wasn’t more sucessful! Here’s to next time!

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