I was an avid knitter while I was in college. As an actress touring with musicals, knitting became my obsession. (I’m sure many of you reading this have an afghan or scarf lovingly made by me hiding in a closet.) I was fascinated how essentially one continuous length of delicate yarn, knotted and looped around itself, could become a strong, lasting garment or a blanket.
The absolute secret to successful knitting is tension. Tension gets a bad rap, usually associated with stress, anxiety, or tightness. In knitting, tension is the way to maintain balance. Tension keeps the yarn relaxed enough to let it breathe on the needles and tight enough so that the garment won’t slip off and unravel. Come to find out, the word tension comes from the Latin word tendere, which means ‘stretch.’ S-t-r-e-t-c-h. Of course, I have been tendu-ing in ballet class for years, stretching my feet, making them stronger!
Yesterday, I celebrated my 20th year of living in New York City! I have been thinking a great deal about the fabric of life. For example, the hours, days, weeks, and years of our lives are comprised of constant choices: music, food, clothing, relationships, jobs, etc. This is just us exercising our taste and judgment, but these choices are not who we are. Who we are is the thread that connects them. Knotting and looping, stretching and pulling, easing up, holding close – creating our fabric as the years accumulate.
I have a friend that is a very special part of my life. We go through cycles of either being in each other’s lives on full blast or months and miles away from one another. We always find our way back because we are threaded. Each embedded in the other’s fabric. It is an unshakable connection no matter the distance, or time or experiences that come between our associations. I think the relationship gets stronger because of the space it is given to stretch.
One of my favorite quotes is by Kahlil Gibran. He says, “Let there be spaces in your togetherness.” So nice, right? Whenever I miss my Mom and Dad, or get crunchy about so many of my friends living so far away, or especially when I think about my Sister moving back to Missouri this month, I think of that quote. It’s just space and time. It’s the tension, stretching the relationship so it can get stronger, not diminishing the love we share. Threaded.
Who or what is threaded into your fabric? Are you holding tightly with attachment or are you relaxed and knotting and looping around them with ease? Find the balance and create the space. Blessed be the tie that binds.
In the spirit of thread and yarn, I have a new tool in my kitchen that I want to share with you. It is a spiralizer that makes vegetables into noodles! I’m not advocating for any particular brand. I’m sure any one you choose on Amazon will be of better quality than the gadget I bought. But no matter, bells and whistles aren’t needed for this. I went cheap and love the textures and shapes it adds to my dishes. If you don’t need one more thing in your kitchen, by all means, use your vegetable peeler and create ribbons. It’s awfully fun though. I feel like a little kid playing!
I made sweet potato noodles, quickly boiled them for a minute and then tossed them with some pesto.
Here is another quick and easy recipe I came up with using carrots and beets.
Israeli Couscous with Israeli Spices and Vegetables Noodles
- 1 cup dried Israeli couscous prepared as the package suggests, drained
- 1/2 cup spiraled raw carrots
- 1/2 cup spiraled raw beets
- 1/2 teaspoon sumac
- 1/2 teaspoon za a'tar
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 tablespoons chopped parsley
- salt and pepper to taste
Combine everything together and serve chilled or warm.