Thursday, July 01, 2010

Defining Moments

If you ever watch the Dr Phil show, you will know that he talks a lot about defining moments in your life.  I gave that a lot of thought and could think of none.  Oh well, not to worry.  Too busy crocheting.
Peter and I were talking at the fair a few days ago (wow, seems longer ago than that) about how far the chapter has come since he organized it 3 years ago.
That got me thinking about how I got to where I am now.
It all started with the click of my computer mouse!  If I had not made that click, the things I'm doing now would not be.
I was reading the Talking Crochet newsletter that I subscribe to online.  At the bottom are a list of links to other places.  Hmm, Crochet Partners looked like something I might be interested in.  The folks I used to crochet with have scattered, and my roommate is marginally interested in trying new things. 
Click!  And a new life begins.  I joined Crochet Partners, a huge on-line discussion group owned and moderated by Jean Leinhauser.  Jean has edited and published crochet booklets and books forever.  I have several with her name on them from the 80's.  For the first several weeks I just lurked (said nothing but read everything).  I followed every link posted.  I have crocheted for more years than I want to admit, but I saw things I had never seen, learned about techniques that I didn't know had names. I had done most of them, just didn't know they had names.  But I also learned about a few that I hadn't tried.  I got brave and started making some comments of my own. 
One of the ladies was trying to organize sending scarfs to some of our troops at the holidays because so many do not receive packages from home.  Well, I try to send her several each year. A couple of years ago, her son was killed in a school shooting, and at about the same time, another ladies future daughter-in-law was killed in another school shooting.  And so, the Comfortghan Project began.  I didn't want to coordinate it but I collect squares, assemble and mail ghans to those who need a hug.  I met my friend Laurie and her friends as a direct result of the Comfortghan Project.  We meet every week at Starbucks for coffee and crochet.
I was also looking for a place to donate some small fleece blankies that I crocheted edgings on.  Peter Franzi suggested the Oakland Children's Hospital.  Someone else suggested Project Linus.
I checked out Project Linus, they took my little blankies, and I have become more involved with them as time goes by.  In fact, I designed a babyghan which is on their website.
Peter put out an invite to anyone in the Bay Area to come to his house for a Crochet Soiree.  We had a great time, good food and nice people.  Peter did this about 3 times before he moved it to the community center where he volunteered for the food bank.  And out little chapter of the CGOA was born. Since inception, Peter is president and treasurer and I am v.p. and secretary. Before that little mouse click, I didn't even know the CGOA existed.
With all the inspiration and encouragement, I have become more creative and proficient at recording my original ideas.  I am now selling a few patterns on my Ravelry page.
The biggest boom I have gotten from that little click was an email from Jean Leinhauser asking if I would be interested in being a reviewer for her new CGOA Masters in Advanced Crochet Stitches and Techniques.  Holy cow! Me??  I'm reviewing my first portfolio now.
Oh, yea!  I knew nothing about blogs.  Even my computer skills have quadrupled.
And all from one click of the mouse.