28.3.12

37 Friends


What wonderful people you all are, and more tolerant of my last, seriously self-indulgent post than I deserve, particularly as I fear I may have been repeating myself. And of course you're all right, I'm happiest when I'm writing about whatever I have to share, whether that's knit related or not. I think homebird Nicki and muddy boots Anne put their fingers on the way forward here, this is not a knitting blog, it is a knitter's blog, and this particular knitter doesn't just knit. So, anything goes, what fun!

But this isn't a post about me, it's a post about you, kinda', because it's a post about friendship. Where-are-they-now school friends, geographically scattered college friends, old friends, new friends, a succession of best friends stretching back to kindergarten, and now blog-friends ... if my days are the warp of my life then my friends, and my family, are the weft.


When I think about friendship, about what it means to have a friend, I think of a line from Toni Morrison's novel Beloved"She is a friend of my mind. She gather me, man. The pieces I am, she gather them and give them back to me in all the right order." Best friends do that for sure, but so can blog friends, and isn't that just the most marvellous thing.

Lines from another novel* describe perfectly how I feel about the people Cuckoo would call my bloddies: "I do like to pass the day with you in serious and inconsequential chatter. I wouldn't mind washing up beside you, dusting beside you, reading the back half of the paper while you read the front. We are friends and I would miss you ... I don't want to lose this happy space where I have found someone who is smart and easy and doesn't bother to check her diary when we arrange to meet."

Of course mostly we blog-friends never meet, but like pen-friends of old we form strong bonds based on mutual self disclosure, good will reciprocated, and shared enthusiasms. If you'll forgive me a final quote? C.S. Lewis this time: "Friendship is born at that moment when one person says to another: "What! You too? I thought I was the only one."

This week I have lunched with a fab friend who feeds me far too well, spent hours on the phone to my bestie, Lal, and cried with my bloddie Artistica Annie who is far too far away for me to hug ... follow the link, read her last few posts, and you'll know why I have painted my toenails in rainbow colours. Maybe you could too if you believe in the healing power of positive energy!


One blog friend forgave the whippet that ate the cowl I was knitting for her (well I think she did!) and another popped a wee papier-mâché sculpture of the same naughty whippet in the post to me. A Mother's Day gift from my four lovely children - you're awesome guys - especially commissioned by them from the supremely talented Vanessa Cabben of (the sadly no longer updated) Do you mind if I knit, and delivered today. This is Finn, my whippety best mate, who likes nothing better than to play with autumn leaves (and tennis balls). Vanessa has captured his character perfectly, and has backed his little 4" alter-ego with a brooch pin, so if I want I can take him everywhere with me. Honestly, this is possibly the most glorious present I have ever been given. I jumped with joy when I unwrapped it, literally, and I think there might have been a little yip of glee as well. There's been happy dancing here today!

So, I've waxed lyrical, I've told you about painting my toenails, and I've asked you to join me in The Rainbow Feet Blog Mob ... but that's okay, yes?, because we're friends!

*Jeanette Winterson's Written On The Bodywhich I only know because it was a book group read. I didn't enjoy it.

37 comments :

  1. Annie, I adore your Blog. I love reading anything you write whether it be about your knitting, your walks, quotes or your naughty whippets (which I can completely relate to). I have found many friendships enhanced by physical distance as I make more of an effort to keep in touch and exchanges seem more detailed when you take the time to sit and write the goings-on of your life. So you are spot on with the friendship stuff. I LOVE your brooch xx

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  2. What a wonderful, wonderful present. :)

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  3. WHAT a beautiful brooch - I love its expression of doggy joy.

    You can quote C.S. Lewis anytime - he is one of my very favourite authors (and I love that particular quote).

    Your friend, Sue ;)

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  4. Hello dear Annie, I love your blog no matter what you write about because your beautiful personality shows through. I started writing a blog to connect with people who had similar interests to me, then it expanded from there, I feel like you are all an extended family and I am sharing your journey's with you, through thick and thin. I was caught up attempting to write to please people, then realised that it wasn't the authentic me. If people read my blog and find a friend there, it makes me feel happy, if not then they just pass on and that is ok too. I do sometimes wish I was there 'over the pond' and could call in for a cuppa and a chat and give a hug or two when needed, until then virtual hugs are always at the ready.
    Your Finn sounds a little like my friends dog who is also called Finn, he has chewed through too many lounge chairs to count, rips papers and strews them all over the house, today he was very clever, he 'took' the plastic cover off a magazine and left the magazine in perfect order!!!!
    Sending good thoughts to your friend 'Annie' she sounds a very strong lady with a good humour.
    xx Sandi

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  5. I love Vanessa's papier maché models, you are lucky.
    I'm glad you write about things other than knitting. I don't think I'd read a blog that was only about knitting - I love your knitting but I like other things too.

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  6. I think blog friendships are extra special because we never meet, it allows you to meet all kinds of people you never would in real life, and have a more rich circle of friends because of it.
    and I Love that quote!

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  7. Ahhhh Annie such a lovely post x no need to put ourselves in boxes.... I am all the colours of the rainbow, not just one!!! I do love the spirit of the blogging community where like minded souls seem to find each other. What about that present!? Oh my god, I think I would have skipped around in glee! That is just beautiful and even more beautiful because it is so so personal to you. Just so lovely, thoughtful, caring and considered. That says a lot not only about the ones who bought it for you but also about you....because that's how they feel about you. Despite all the mounds of poo in life, beauty and love always shine through eh. Hope you have a lovely day x

    Jo x x x

    P.S. Good job I don't know where you live cos I would come lover and pinch that beauty!!!

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  8. love the little Finn broach!
    More whippetty posts please :-D

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  9. what an lovely lovely post Annie x
    I must admit blogging has meant more to me than i could ever have imagined, the friendship is wonderful....i just love it x
    I adore the first quote from 'beloved' for me that sums it up for me.
    finn the whippet is gorgeous.
    love jooles x

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  10. GORGEOUS, gorgeous whippet, what a wonderful present.
    Have just caught up with artistica domestica blog so off to paint toenails in rainbow colours .... x

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  11. Annie, I too adore your blog and all your beautiful, eloquent writing. Be yourself and we will read and listen. This is such a heart felt post of love and friendship and family and how we are bonded in reality and on the web. I love my virtual friendships, they feed my soul for I live forever away from my closest friend and despite having friends around me I find myself comforted by my blogging friendships when it's late at night and I can read about their days. Your friend Annie's blog has really touched me, especially now that I am working in Oncology. I am seeing things from two sides and praying that I can make a difference in my patients lives xox

    I simply LOVE anything Vanessa makes, she is one magical gal with all her creations and how very special that your children requested a Finn brooch for you, they obviously love their mama very much. I'm off on a plane to my homeland tonight and look forward to reading your posts from there. xox Penelope

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  12. What a fabulous brooch. Strangely I was on the Emma Bridgewater website and was looking at the whippet models she had had for sale - it instantly brought you to mind. I think whippets will be associated with you for good in my tiny brain box. I have 5 cats ... but 5 whippets - that makes you madder than me! ( and not many are hehe).

    I love you blog as I said before - write what works for you.

    xx

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  13. Thank you for cheering up my lunch break with your upbeat writing, gorgeous images and links to lovely places.

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  14. Blogging is a whole different world of friendship, isn't it and I love it!
    I love your whippet brooch Annie, it was extrememly thoughtful and generous of your family to commission clever Vanessa!
    Vivienne x

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  15. What a beautifully written post Annie, you've really started my day off right. P.S. - Loving the brooch!

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  16. GrannyPurple29 March, 2012

    Many years ago, during 6 weeks in a cast for a broken wrist, I had rainbow fingernails--all the colours came out of bottles shaped like teddy bears. And I'm sure it helped the healing!

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  17. I'm so happy when I catch your blog first thing in the morning--I come back to it often during the day in my mind--you write so lovely. Friends. Aren't we all so blessed?
    Your brooch is amazing....such details. (Is that just a tiny bit of yarn hanging out of his mouth with the leaf??? ) Love the whimsy.

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  18. I will be painting my toe nails in rainbow colours as soon as I get home!
    So many people I know are going through the very same hard times, in fact if you take a look at my blog page you'll see I have just put my heart and sould into a little hand embroidered card I made for a dear friend who is facing the battle for the second time. She is a wonderful quilter and crafter and so I felt a little homemade card with a spring like feel might raise her spirits if only briefly. I'm no designer and cannot come up with the wonderful creations I see on all the amazing blogs I follow, like yours, but I hope she feels the love I put into it.
    I will be following Annie's progress on her blog - she writes so wonderfully and just had me captivated for a good half hour reading her story. Still fighting the lump in my throat.
    Sending get better vibes and much love for your wonderful post.
    I am fairly new to blogging, but I am so heartened by the wonderful community of people. Much love to you all.

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  19. What a gorgeous little art piece! How lucky to have such a talented friend who cares enough to make you such a lovely thing!

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  20. FIrst of all, this cheered me up. It is cold and gloomy here in usually sunny San Diego today. Apparently the UK has our weather lately. That's fine. Happy to share.

    In the time I have been "online" and particularly since I began curating Thomagination and my Etsy shop I have made so many friends worldwide. It blows me away how small the world can seem and how much we all have in common. I often utter the words "Why can't we all just get along?" when I read or hear of horrors in the news. Why is that so difficult?

    I DO love all your posts Annie. Knit-wise or otherwise. Its all very inspiring. I only wish MY blog could be as engaging. ;)

    And that little whippet is beautiful!

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  21. Lovely little sculpture of Finn...how clever Vanessa is at giving animals such character, life and movement! No wonder you were delighted, and it was so kind of your four children to arrange this!
    Btw, I should just write whatever you want to, Annie, and enjoy your blog as your readers do!
    Have a happy weekend.
    Helen x

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  22. I'm a big fan of Vanessa's work, and I can feel your joy, Annie! And that little dog is full of happiness with those leaves - smiles guaranteed both to wearer and watchers!

    Happy last days of March!

    Yours,
    Mia

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  23. Annie,
    That is such a lovely post and spoken from the heart. Love your whippet too. It seems lots of us have gone over to leave a message for Annie. There will be lots of rainbow toes.
    Sarah x

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  24. Touching - i read your friends blog and watched the video and feel all kinds of hope and sadness. Sending her good wishes.

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  25. Hello Annie, what wonderful photos! I was so looking forward to seeing your photos of Finn, and they're beautiful. Wearing the brooch of Finn will be like wearing a piece of sculpture on your body! I'm one who has knitting in the title of my blog too, but my posts meander all over the place, sometimes I think I should change the name, but it's been that title for such a long time now, and it's almost impossible to just blog about one thing isn't it? I also think it's good not to be strict about what we blog about. We change, our blogs change with us, I know my blog has changed enormously over the years. Blog friends have come and gone too, which I found difficult at first, but now I think it's the nature of blogging, people drift in and out, friendships change, people change, and the best thing we can do is go with the flow and enjoy it all. Hurrah for rainbow toes! Love Vanessa xxx

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  26. Come on Rainbow toes! Let's kick this whole breast cancer thing right out of the park!

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  27. Your blog is on my short list of blogs to read. Blog friends are wonderful, I've made some good ones.

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  28. Your children are wonderful - what a superb gift to give you. Vanessa has such talent and she has captured Finn so beautifully. I enjoyed reading your thoughts on friendship and blogging - probably because they echo my own feelings on the matter. Before I started blogging I didn't know anyone locally who knitted or baked or liked the same things as me but the beauty of blogging is that sharing similar passions brings people close together and so it no longer matters about the distance and sharing life stories (as Annie is bravely sharing hers) gives us all opportunities for compassion and friendship - I'm off to look for some nail varnish now x

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  29. I just wish I could write like you...... I consider you to be a good friend ..whose heart is very warm...One of these days you ,me Lal and the rest are going to sit down for a good all chinwag........xx

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  30. I agree about the wonders of blog friends. I have met some in the flesh as well and one or two of those now seem as long lasting as some of my oldest friends. It is hard to remember a time when I didn't know them. And of course there are many I haven't met who enrich my life immeasurably.

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  31. What a wonderful, wonderful post!!! You've described friendships (and especially blogging ones) amazingly well. And blogging friends ARE fantastic!!! I do sometimes think that it's great shame that we can't just pop round to each other's houses for a cuppa every now and again. But, Elizabethm is totally right - our blogging pals enrich our lives hugely (despite the fact that we don't get to meet up in the real world). I liked the C. S. Lewis quote especially. It 'came true' as I was reading about the other books you'd quoted from. I read 'Beloved' and 'Written on the Body' at uni. I LOVED 'Beloved' hugely. But 'Written on the Body' was a struggle - groan, groan, groan! ;-)
    Carly
    x

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  32. Annie, you lucky lucky thing and what seriously wonderful family you have. I love Vanessa' work very much, she has an amazing talent. Just don't let that naughty boy eat it up, will you?
    Happy Easter to you.
    xx

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  33. Your whippet is beautiful Annie, what an amazing and thoughtful present, I love the way Vanessa always seems to capture such life and spirit in her work. Have a wonderful Easter, I'm really glad to have discovered your blog x

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  34. i love your blog name annie, and what ever you choose to write about is all good i am sure! i knew if i put knit in my title i would write about anything but, i don't know why, but i am just that way! and vanessas work. sigh. what a lovely family you have. enjoy your beautiful pin!

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  35. Oh, what a post. I like the way you write about friendship, blogging friendship in particular. (Beloved is up there as one of the best books of all time in my opinion - I really need to re-read my copy). You write beautifully. You're blog is becoming one of my favorites - incidentally, i don't see it as a knitting blog at all, more a blog about life written by a knitter. xxx

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  36. hi annie, I'm catching up now that we're back. i have missed your beautiful writing, and I'm so happy to read this particular post. i love the friendships we make in blogland as they are meaningful and uplifting, supportive and inspiring. What a gift for us to be able to put out our thoughts and read each others'. By the way, I never paint my toes, but I'm going to make some "me" time to do so.

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  37. May I use your Whippet sculpture figure for a Christmas Card? Thank you. Ruth Moser

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