Welcome! It's 2023 and I've decided to give my blog another go and social media some attention. Towards the end of 2022 I found that I really like interacting with the social media communities surrounding crafters and people dealing with mental health issues and neurodiversity. I started watching TikTok and found a great YouTuber with a Facebook Group that I joined and enjoy. So that got me thinking that I used to be online and interacting with a lot of great crafters and other folks in the 90's and early 2000's, and I miss it. So, for those of you who are new here, an introduction:
My name is Shannon and I am 45 years old (for 6 more weeks, at least), and live in Rochester, NY. I am the mother of 2 grown daughters, Jo is 20 and Autistic and lives with me, and CJ who is 18 and lives with her father in SC and is going to college there. I finally married my husband, Dan, in 2021 after being together 7 years. I work full time as a Certified Pharmacy Technician, having started in January 2020, just before the Coronavirus Pandemic hit.
In addition to suffering my entire life from depression, I also have anxiety, OCD and ADHD. I suffer from PTSD when it comes to telephones after my 15 years working in a call center. I am a hoarder due to my OCD. My executive functioning is way behind. I have auditory processing delays. I wasn't diagnosed as having ADHD until I was 29 years old. I discovered the term "auditory processing delay" when my Autistic daughter was diagnosed with it when I was about 28 and was so relieved to have someone finally explain why I'd always said I had a hearing problem but kept passing hearing tests. I'm just a bag of neurodivergent traits. In the past year I seem to have finally gotten on the right combination of medication to be happier & more content with my life. The rest is the hard work I have to do myself, like decluttering my hoard and following thru on my projects. That's where ya'll come in. I need accountability partners and my audience will become critical to my progress.
Now, you probably aren't here to read about my mental health issues, so on to the good stuff. I am a yarn and fiber hoarder, and a hobby addict. The biggest things I tend to buy are yarn and knit/crochet tools. But in the past year I got back into spinning fiber into yarn. Last November I upgraded some parts on my Babe Production Spinning Wheel (babesfibergarden.com) and splurged on a TON of fiber that I did not spin yet. Like I'm known to do, I get burned out after my exuberance wears off. So, a huge basket with pounds and pounds of fiber has been sitting in my living room waiting to be spun for over a year now. I got an e-spinner for Christmas this year from my husband. It's an Electric Eel Wheel Nano 2.0 from www.dreamingrobots.com. So far I've spun up some of my merino/stellina blend that I bought last year and it's gorgeous. This weekend I will ply it into some yarn that I have no plans for as of yet.
Now a little background on my yarn crafts... in 1999 I decided that I wanted to crochet and knit. I had only ever learned how to chain with a crochet hook when I was little and my mom let me play around with a hook and some spare yarn. She's not a crocheter... she had started blankets for me & my brother when we were little and she never finished them. She couldn't tell me how to do any stitches. So I got a book from a big box store and some yarn and hooks and I taught myself crochet. But I really wanted to do the two-handed knitting thing really badly. So, again, I bought a booklet from Walmart and some needles, sat on my bed and tried to cast on ... for HOURS! Literally hours I spent trying to figure out how to cast on. There was no YouTube back then. Most people didn't have digital cameras, so websites about knitting tended to be just plain text, and newsgroups were where you found your knitting community. But eventually I figured it out. I started knitting and had to pay such close attention to what I was doing that I realized it was helping with the massive tension headaches I was suffering from. So I kept going. Nevermind that my "purl" stitches were actually "knit thru the back loop" for a while, I kept trying and learning. On my own. In 2002, when my first daughter was born, I decided I wanted to learn to knit socks. While I'd been pregnant for her, I began hoarding yarn... I bought an overflowing cart full of yarn to make everyone I knew a crocheted throw for Christmas. Although I did eventually finish crocheting 8 of them, I think that left me with yarn for about 6 more in my stash. When I got into sock knitting, I started hoarding sock yarn from Lorna's Laces. That first pair of socks took me 9 months to knit and were really too small. I'm not sure what happened to them. Sassy Stripe yarn - pink and orange striped. I also went thru several sets of size 1 Brittany wooden needles because my hands were hot & sweaty and I knit with a death grip on them, so they were all bent and flexible from the abuse after a short time. At this time, I had a blog, a digital camera, and a good relationship with several newsgroups online. I was knitting and sharing my progress, learning from the community and improving my skills. Then, in 2003, my co-worker unintentionally outed me at work with my blog and my frustration with my coworkers and I lost my job over it. I had to delete my blog. I spiraled into a depression and was pregnant with my 2nd daughter at the time. I knit my first attempt at 2-handed color work with a sweater pattern by Philosopher's Wool and made sweaters with my Ultimate Sweater Machine. And of course, I kept buying yarn. I kept starting projects but rarely finished them. That sweater from Philosopher's Wool is still unfinished somewhere in my parents' basement. In 2004 I got a job in a call center and had money flowing again, so more yarn. I tried repeatedly to put myself on yarn diets, as was the rage on the blog circuits of yarn people. I decided that I could buy books and tools but no more yarn. So, in came the knit and crochet books. So, yeah, I have quite a library of my own now. A couple years later, I got divorced and the depression took over again. From 2006-2013 I was morbidly depressed. In October 2013, I had gastric bypass surgery. I lost over 100 pounds in 9 months and was re-introduced to Dan, who I went to high school with, at our 19 year reunion in 2014. On our first date, where we were meeting at a bar/restaurant for "drinks," I brought my knitting in case I actually had alcohol and needed to wait before driving home. LOL. Luckily, neither of us are drinkers and we spent 5 hours chatting and no alcohol was consumed. Exactly 7 years from that first date we were married (finally). In between, I had moved into his house and when his brother moved out, I turned his old room into a yarn room. Not to be confused with my Happy Place room, which is where I have my desk and all my Silhouette and planner and office supplies. No, the big yarn room is where I was originally taping my podcasts. I made a whopping 3 episodes before my older daughter moved back in with me. Then the yarn room became Jo's room, and that's where my podcasts died.
Anyway, here I am, knitting socks and sweaters and crocheting afghans and spinning wool. I'm in the midst of trying to become Craft Yarn Council certified as an instructor in Crochet. Relaunching my blog and adding social media (Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, YouTube, and TikTok). Embarking on a crafting No-Buy year. And, hopefully, making some friends along the way.
If you found me, I would really appreciate it if you'd leave a comment with what crafts you're into and where you're from. And please follow me on my other socials - myshannanigansdotcom on TikTok, Instagram, Facebook & Youtube and my_shannanigans on Twitter.