It's winter, time for cold fingers, hot drinks, and cozy nights on the couch under a blanket. Winter is a perfect time to reconnect with domestic crafts, or learn a new one while enjoying a hot cup of tea.
I learned to crochet during a snowstorm. My older sister was visiting and my entertainment value plummeted when we got stuck inside while 8 inches of snow piled up outside. I made a pot of hibiscus tea and fretted about the plow schedule for the neighborhood. My sister, undaunted, pulled out her hooks, a skein of yarn and set me to work creating a single chain. When I had made one hundred chains, she directed me to rip it out and do it again until my fingers memorized how to make the stitch. In one night, we finished off two pots of tea and I had nothing to show for my work but sore fingers and wrinkly yarn. In two days, I made a scarf.
Even if you live in a temperate climate, it can do wonders for the soul to turn off the phone, and snuggle up alone with a movie, a pot of tea, and knitting needles. A quiet night is valuable whether you live in North Dakota or Florida. If you don't know how to knit or crochet, you can teach yourself from a book. The internet is full of tutorial videos for when you get stuck. If yarn crafts aren't to your taste, you can make magnets from glass marbles and pictures, flowers for your hair from material and rhinestones, or even get your aggressions out making mosaics.
If you have a friend or family member who can teach you a craft, or do it with you, make a night of crafting together. The conversation that flows from creating with others can be insightful and genuine - and nothing compares to the special feeling of learning something new from someone you love. If you learn on your own, you have that spectacular feeling of accomplishment of independent learning.
Since that winter snowstorm with my sister, I've made hats, amigurumi dolls, shawls, and fingerless gloves. Whenever I pull out the hibiscus tea, I think of that snowstorm and how much I learned and I'm inspired to learn more. I need my sister to come back out during inclement weather for another crochet boot camp.
If you'd like my recommendations for crochet or knitting instructions or websites, please feel free to contact me.