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I need my wants!!!

April 11, 2012

Long, long ago, back in the day, I remember the economics classes that I had to take in junior high and high school. Along with the basic concepts of supply and demand, there was always the discussion of needs versus wants.  Sure, I get the fact that food, water, shelter, clothing, these things are needs.  Just about everything else is a want. I get that. Really I do. Furthermore, if I didn’t, my husband, who is in the financial industry, would surely be delighted to enlighten me on these basic concepts. They are essential concepts to understand, and they will be incredibly beneficial for anyone to remember throughout their lives. If you add further basic concepts like budgeting, saving for the future, living within your means, using credit wisely, etc., you can almost be assured of success. A ll of this stuff is great, but where does yarn fall in the grand scheme of things?

You see, over the next 30 days, I am going to be faced with the ultimate temptations not once, but three different times. Yarn, yarn and more yarn. One of a kind yarns, specially dyed yarns, sale yarns, soft, lovely, beautiful yarns. And fiber. Glorious, beautiful fibers. Fibers newly shorn from sheep, fibers dyed in a rainbow of lovely colors, fibers just begging to be spun into yarn.

First up, this weekend is the Minnesota Yarn Shop Hop. Fourteen different Twin Cities and surrounding area yarn shops are participating in special events throughout the weekend. These events includes chances to win $2000 worth of yarn, free patterns at each individual shop and limited edition yarns dyed especially for a certain shop, just for this event. Furthermore, it is a chance to help stock local food shelves because for every charitable donation of food made at the participating shops, you get a free charm for that shop. Personally, I think this sound like a great time. A chance to check out new yarn shops that I have never been to (of the 14, I have only been in 6!), a chance to meet other knitters, and road tripping! Count me in!

Or not. There are several indicators in my life that are telling me that I should not even think about going on this adventure. First of which is that my husband will be gone all weekend so I am in charge of all the kids. Normally this is not a problem, except that one of my darling children is on crutches with a broken ankle. If it were my daughter, no problem, she likes to look at pretty yarn, but no, it is my youngest son who is hobbled by crutches. I can guarantee that he will not be at all excited to look at yarn shops. He is also an extremely active child who can’t sit still at all and who has been constrained by his cast for two weeks and has another two weeks to go before he can move into a boot. Taking that child into what would surely be a small, busy shop full of numerous baskets, tables and displays that he could knock over would be suicide. So as much as it pains me not to go and play, I shall most likely resist. Because, you see, right after that is . . .

Yarnover, the 26th Annual Minnesota Knit Together put on by the Minnesota Knitter’s Guild. This year Diane, my mother in law, and I are taking a class on Saturday morning.  This leaves an entire afternoon free to browse the marketplace full of 40+ vendors selling . . . what else but yarn. And roving. And all the goodies that go with them, such as needles, spindles, bags, bowls, etc. Oh the temptations . . .

If that wasn’t enough to drive even the most thrifty knitter batty, coming up a mere two weeks after Yarnover, is none other than the Sheppard’s Harvest, Minnesota’s Sheep and Wool Festival. There are four of us making plans to make the trip to the Washington County Fairgrounds for this. This time, over 100 vendors will be there tempting me with their fibery goodness beyond all imagination.

I am going to need some help. I just got back from a trip to Mexico over spring break with my eldest son, we are taking the youngest two kids and tagging along with my husband to Scottsdale, AZ to play in the sun while he attends a conference, I am foolishly trying to save up to buy a spinning wheel, I have a child graduating from high school . . . the list of expenses coming up is endless. The reasons why I don’t need any more yarn or fiber are equally as endless.

And yet, if the needs are taken care of, isn’t there room for a little bit of the wants? How does one approach these temptations? I fully intend to limit myself to a budget. I fully intend to practice restraint. I fully intend to be mindful of all that I have coming up in my family’s financial obligations, I fully intend . . . let’s face it, the road to hell is paved with good intentions. What I need is a plan. How should I plan for these events? Do I split my budget between them? Do I decide I am only going to buy something at one of the three opportunities and force myself not to shop at the other two? Do I say no to all of them and try to be content with just being able to see what is out there and plan for next year? (Yeah, right!) I am a grown woman darn it! I should be able to handle this, right?

In the meantime, I am going to be knitting and spinning like a mad woman. I am going to try and tear through my stash like there is no tomorrow and everything has to be done today. That way, if I run out of yarn, it goes from a want to a need, right? I will need to buy more yarn and fiber lest I go insane.

Don’t laugh. It’s a plan, isn’t it?

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