Blank Linen

As I’ve been on Facebook and other social media the past week I’ve seen lots of jokes and memes about not knowing what day it is during holiday vacation.  While I can not abandon business entirely during the holiday season, there were times in the past week when I too noticed a surreal disconnection from every day life.  I’ve had family visiting, and the Parris House is the locus of much of the extended family holiday celebration as well, which means, well…a lot of work along with all the joy and never quite enough time in the day.

Today we are “de-decorating,” as my husband puts it.  The fog of festivity is clearing and we have a brand new year.  There are so many metaphors for the new year:  clean slate, blank page, and more.  As a hooker, I’m thinking of it as a bolt of blank linen.  When one of these bolts lands “thud” on my doorstep I’m never quite sure what it will turn in to.  A combination of planning and serendipity conspire to use that linen up and the next thing I know I’m ordering another.

This year I’m leaning hard toward the planning side of things with an open mind and heart for serendipity as well.  Some of the most important opportunities I’ve had in my work and in my life have come unexpectedly, so while I can not rule out the unexpected, I’m also doubling down on the planning portion for the year.  Customers and friends, online and in 3D, of Parris House Wool Works may notice some changes.  My word for the year is “bold,” and my plan is to move my skill set and my venture to a new level in 2017.   I will be learning how to do new things, offering new products and classes, and starting some large projects.  I also plan to support one major non-profit effort, which I will announce later this month.  It is more important to me than ever that I give back somehow to make the lives of others better, even if I can only do it in some small way.

This afternoon I read a discouraging post about an acquaintance’s fiber shop in upstate NY.  Her sign, and those of other business owners in the area, had been vandalized with hate symbols.  It’s no secret that these types of stories were much too prevalent in 2016, and here was another – involving someone I know and whose products I use – in the opening days of 2017.   The people of her town got together, however, and started cleaning the vandalized surfaces almost immediately.  Her sign was back to normal very soon after the attack.   The cleaning up of the town was an act by the townspeople of defiance, perseverance, and love in the face of defacement and hate.  There’s a lesson here for us in the way we look at 2017, this new year, and that is:

We have a new year, a clean slate, a blank linen.   We can persevere in love for what is right and in defiance of what is wrong until we achieve our goals and set new ones, even when we experience setbacks beyond our control.  In the achievement of a better 2017, there will always be people to help us along the way.  As Fred Rogers (my childhood hero) famously quoted his mother as saying, “Always look for the helpers.”

What are your plans for this year?  What will you use your “blank linen” for?  What achievements in 2016 are now stepping stones for an even better 2017?  I invite you to share your plans, dreams, and goals for 2017 on our social media pages and your own using the hashtag #blanklinen.  They do not have to be hooking related, or fiber art related; there is no limiting parameter for your posts and shares.   You have already achieved a great deal in your life.  What’s next?  None of us came this far to only come this far.

Have a wonderful 2017 and I hope to see #blanklinen peppering social media as you share your dearest dreams and achievements.

Happy hooking – Beth