I live in the Piedmont of the Southern Appalachia, a gorgeous place with a temperate-subtropical climate, a huge diversity of plant life, and a plethora of adventures to be had. With me, in my little cottage, are my husband, two children, and various animals at various times, all of whom are well loved.
I am an amateur herbalist and am constantly amazed at how well plants can heal our bodies. Then I have to remind myself that our pharmaceuticals come from plant constituents, so that makes sense. I keep a medicinal herb garden, though I’m not very good at growing things, so it is often me trying to make plants grow and then the plants dying on me. When I finally discover something that I can grow, I grow a lot of it. It makes me feel like I have a green thumb.
I crochet also, and have most of my life. I learned from my mum when I was four, but didn’t really do anything with it until I was married. As a newly married woman, I decided I needed an ugly granny square blanket for my couch. All poor, newly married people need ugly, granny square afghans. So, I bought a crochet hook (size G) and some yarn (white and navy blue) and proceeded to create my granny squares. Only, the square did not come out as a square. It came out as a triangle. I tried again, and came up with a trapezoid. My third try gave me a circle…that curled upward.
“You know,” said my husband, The Engineer, “if you do the opposite of what you just did, you’d have a ball.” So I did the opposite of what I’d just done, and made a ball, stuffing it with cotton balls and giving it our new kitten.
She never did play with it.
I asked The Engineer, in his mathematically glory, to figure out why my squares were not coming out square. Now, one must remember that he was a young engineer at the time, so his mathematical glory was still only dimly shining, as opposed to the great, golden glow it is today. Because of that, he couldn’t figure out what I was doing wrong.
I had to swallow my pride and call my mum on the phone. “I don’t know what I’m doing wrong,” I told her.
Being long distance, and before the invention of Skype and Face time, she couldn’t show me how to do it. So she got her own crochet hook and thread, and talked me through it on the phone as she did it along with me. I finally did get a square.
Guess how many squares I made for that ugly, newlywed blanket.
That’s right, just one.