Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Speak Your Truth: The #MeToo Campaign on Social Media

This was from Representative Graig Meyer, NC House District 50, yesterday on his facebook status "Dear #MeToo,
I hear you. I see you. I believe you. I will do my best to support you.
Thank you for being willing to share your stories. Yes, I have heard from women that I know and love about their harassment and assaults. Men too. Still, the volume of your voices is striking me anew today.
You should not have to feel alone or stand alone. I commit to using my voice and my power. I have introduced legislation on sexual assault and will continue to address the issue. I know that I can do more, and I will.
#WeCanDoBetter "

I just want to say that we need more of him, everywhere. So as you vote for candidates, make sure to ask the tough questions and find out where they stand on women's issues. Then write a letter to the editor of your local paper and let everyone know how that candidate stands. If you know a woman that would make a great local, state or federal official, tell her, ask her to run for office. Then have her contact her local party leaders. They can make sure she has what she needs to run, and knows how. They will help her campaign and win. This is part of what we do to change things. This is how we get more "Graig Meyers" into office.

As you find that brave survivor inside you, remember that there are others out there that may be still struggling. You can help by volunteering your time at crisis centers, help lines, women's homeless shelters, or recovery programs. When we lift each other up, the world becomes better.

To those of you that have said the #MeToo campaign is not making a difference, it is. This is how many women find their voice. They find it one shaking #MeToo at a time. I know when I first told my story as a post on my blog, it took me days to write it. And even as I finished, I debated posting it at all. I knew some people would know exactly who I was talking about. Even as an adult, I knew that in our society, some would blame me. But that hesitant shaky voice, took that leap. I can say that after speaking my truth over and over, it has become easier, it has been empowering. It has caused a whole shift in my being. It was so worth it. So this is the first important step for so many women.

Speak out even when you think no one is listening. Speak out even when your voice shakes. Speak your truth.

Monday, October 16, 2017

All Homeschoolers Must Be Conservative?

I am continually shocked by this.  When I fist started homeschooling, which would be...WOW...officially notified the state of North Carolina of our intent to homeschool back about 1999 or 2000 (hard to believe my boys are adults now), that was the general assumption.  People generally assumed that homeschoolers were all Christian and Conservative.  I guess I would have thought that assumption would have changed by now, that the world of homeschooling and society in general would have moved forward in that type of thinking, but I guess not.

It happened this past weekend at an herbal conference I attended.  The speaker was actually pretty awesome, her session was filled with information and she was such an engaging speaker.  But she made a comment that made me pause.  She was recalling a recent personal experience with her brother.  And that brother having issues with her engaging in his children's lives.  I have heard this from many people, how family members do not parent or live similarly, and have issues with that difference impacting their children.  Anyway her comment was "...He is a conservative and homeschools...you know" (not her exact words)  She kind of said it off the cuff, so I am not sure she even thought that there might be homeschoolers, or in my case, former homeschoolers, in the audience.  I don't think she realized she was making such a broad sweeping, stereotyping statement. There was a definite implication that the two go hand in hand.

Why is there still that assumption that conservative and homeschool go together, and that it is a negative thing.  That it just follows if you are homeschooling you are conservative.  It simply isn't true at all.  There are so many different reasons that people homeschool.  Some do fall into that circle of conservative homeschoolers, but so many do not.  I also know many conservative homeschoolers that are wonderful people.  So the intimation that it is a negative thing is not only wrong, but as an instructor, could lead others to follow that same line of thought....Homeschooler must be Conservative and is also not desirable.

I think we all need to remember, especially when speaking to a large crowd, that stereotyping of any group of individuals is never the right path to take.  There will always be people that will challenge that view.  She could have spoken about her brother with many descriptive terms, including conservative and homeschooling, without the nudge that the two always go together, not only for her brother but everyone.    Let's try to remember to be kind in our words, to be thoughtful.

Like I said she was an amazing speaker, so I let it go and just attribute it to her lack of experience in the world of homeschooling.  But the feeling that went along with those words caught me off guard a bit.  Just my thoughts for today.

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Slip Stitch Cowl

I bought one of the most beautiful yarns on Saturday.  Love it, love the feel, love the colorways.  And I guess I have good taste because my youngest son loved it too, so now the cowl is his.  I used the Millefiori BIG yarn by Berroco.  This is a relatively new yarn at O Suzannah's Yarn on Union.  I say relatively because I haven't been able to go to the Saturday Sit and Knit for quite a few weeks, so the owner was showing me all the fabulous new yarn since my last visit.  I really miss the Sit and Knit so I am going to clear my Saturday schedule and attend.  If I am in town on Saturday mornings that is where I will be.

OK so back to the yarn.  It is an affordable yarn, and great for this project.  You can find the pattern free on Ravelry, the Quick Slip Cowl, is the official name.  It is just a quick linen stitch cowl.  The yarn is chunkier so I used a size 13 circular needle, most people will use a size 15 (which is what the pattern calls for).  But you don't need to worry about gauge as much with this pattern so use what works with the yarn you have.  I won't tell you the whole pattern but you cast on an odd number of stitches place a marker so you know where the beginning of the round is and you just K1, Sl1 WYIF (With Yarn In Front).  Repeat those two stitches around and around and around until it is the width you want or you run out of yarn (well save a few yards to bind off).  Bind off and weave in the ends.  It took just a few hours to make, seriously, it is that quick.  It turned out to be 7 inches wide by 40 inches around.

I used about 1 1/2 balls of the Millefiori BIG yarn, color 5859-Viola, so about 150 yards, but you could easily get away with using just one ball, it would make a great cowl.  I have a half a ball left, and think I am going to go pick up another ball and make myself a cowl.  This would make a great Christmas gift, easy, quick, affordable, and BEAUTIFUL! 

Happy knitting!