I have received some really nice comments and I thank all of you. I could never figure out why I couldn't email back to the people who leave comments. So earlier this evening I fiddled around with the mysterious blogging settings and sort of randomly hit some switches and now we'll see if I can respond back directly. Until then, I have a couple that I'd like to respond to.
First of all, to Lia. Thanks! It was fun to make the crocheted Group Hug square and I think it turned out cute. I got the pattern from Laura's blog. Let us know if you make any and show us what they look like! And if you have any leftover blueberry desserts, send them here!
I also heard from a very generous and busy knitter who has already made 24 squares for Greensburg. Thank you and you are definitely a better (and certainly faster) knitter than I am. 24!! Yay! This knitter (who is blogless) also asked about my contest and the condition that the squares have to be posted on the person's blog. So I thought I'd clarify why I have this condition, and why I have decided to keep it in the rules.
Back when I first cooked up this little contest, I debated about including this condition and I decided to open the contest only to bloggers for a reason. It is because I wanted to do a little something to thank the bloggers who brighten my life everyday.
To me, blogging is more than an activity where I write about my knitting and my life. Blogging is about being part of a world-wide community, a way to meet other people that I would never otherwise get to know in my little corner of the world. I like reading about their knitting (mis)adventures. I like to look at their amazing stashes. I vicariously enjoy seeing the beautiful knitting that is produced. I use and appreciate the free patterns that are so generously shared. And I rely on the advice freely given by more experienced knitters. Without blogging, I think I may have given up on knitting after my first 4 scarves (acrylic, of course) because I didn't yet know about the magic of luscious natural fibers or the wonder of well-stocked yarn shops.
I wouldn't have known about knitting groups, or KAL's or swaps. And I wouldn't have gotten to know so many fun and creative people.
As much as I have had fun writing my own blog, I especially love being able to visit with my cyber friends. I love the way bloggers open their lives and their homes and their hearts. I love learning that I have so many kindred spirits out there, and that I'm not weird or crazy (or else there are lots of us weird and crazy kindred spirits out there knitting!) I have cried when they have shared their losses and disappointments, cheered over their triumphs and laughed at the funny little stories they tell.
I love the feeling of being part of a community. A big part of what defines a community is the sense of common ground in shared interests. And that is probably the most important part of blogging to me. Sharing who I am with people who are sharing who they are.
So when I made up my little contest, I thought of it as just that. A little contest for friends and friends-to-be who have visited my world and let me come visit theirs. So it's not about proving to me that you've knit all these squares, it's about sharing it with me, and sharing some of who you are. And hopefully, if you are one of the lucky people who are knitting something wonderful with the pretty little green yarn prizes, you will write about it and post pictures and share with me what you've made. Maybe we can knit a pair of socks together, through the magic of blogging.
If you don't have a blog, why not take this opportunity to create one? It's really easier than you might think. You might think you can't write, or that you have nothing to say that would be of interest to others. Well, you might just surprise yourself! It's amazing how much blogging has opened my eyes to the things going on around me. It's made me more observant, exercises my brain and gotten me to think about many things I would likely take for granted. It provides a great scrapbook/journal of where my life has been and where it's going. It lets my faraway family and friends stay in touch with my life.
So if you are currently blogless, make a blog tonight! Or tomorrow. Or before August 1, when my contest closes. And not only will you get to participate in the contest, you'll be participating in the most phenomenal community! Happy Blogging!