I love coffee for the “HEY! I’M AWAKE! WOOOOOO!!!” reaction I always have, but I don’t love the nasty little side effects that sometimes crop up. I never drink it before going to work (unless I am in extreme danger of falling asleep while standing) because it can make me a very irritable super beeyotch. Sometimes I feel as though I can’t even stand to be touched: innocuous, small things, like a hug from my husband, put my teeth on edge and it’s all I can do to not shout “HANDS OFF.” Also, one cup of coffee = three trips to the toilet within an hour. And another effect, just as bad as the “hands off” syndrome, is that if I don’t have enough food in my stomach, it gives me such jitters that I can hardly describe what it feels like. Like my hands – really, my arms, up to my elbows- are stuttering. I don’t visibly shake, but I can’t do anything requiring any degree of precision, like write or knit. The only hope of ridding myself of this discomfort is to eat something, especially something with sugar. Doesn’t always work… and it doesn’t seem to be working today. So, stutter along I will, but it means that I won’t likely get much knitting done until the coffee finally wears off. Damn.
What I did get done today, before the stuttering began, is a handy little organizational tool to keep track of my knitting needles. It occured to me that I run the risk of duplicate buying, since I can’t seem to remember what I have when I’m out shopping; also, it would be handy to be able to look at something while browsing patterns to quickly ascertain whether or not I have the required needle size in my stash. Here’s what I came up with (please excuse the horrid, dark pictures): a little bit ‘o origami. I folded a paper in half lengthwise two times, so that it is a single strip. Then, I folded the strip into five more or less equal squares by folding it four times, until I had a single square in my hand. Clear as mud? It’s really simple, but I guess my brain is stuttering too, since I’m not explaining it very well. I then folded again along each crease and rubbed an ink pad across the folds to create lines (I’m not neat enough to just draw). Finally, I stamped needle sizes in each square (hey – gotta find some use for the shelves full of scrapbook supplies I never touch, right?). I filled each square with information about the needles I have: length, material, manufacturer, and circular and dpn notations.
I will probably use the space on the back of the paper to keep track of other knitting supplies – cable needles, row counters, stitch holders, etc. – just so that I can see at a glance what I do and do not have. The nice thing about this format is that it is easily adapted to your day-to-day needs. It can be slipped into a page protector at the front of a knitting journal if you keep yours in a binder, or kept in your knitting bag. Also, it can be folded up into a little square and stashed in your purse or wallet so that you have it handy while shopping. Hope someone finds this useful!