September 28, 2017 at 6:03 pm | Posted in arthrits, rheumatoid arthritis, fibromyalgia, joint pai, crafting, Me, rheumatoid arthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, rheumatoid arthritis (RA) | 10 Comments
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Heavens to Murgatroyd, the woman with more hobbies than days of the year nearly forgot to write a third annual blog week post with the prompt hobbies!

Well, where do I start? I’ve done ‘crafty stuff’ since I was a tot, especially needlework. I can remember learning to sew a simple picture in pale green cotton on a slightly darker green background (fabric that I think was part of the ‘Daisy suit’ I had when I was four … and I can’t have been much more than four when I was sewing that picture). I haven’t stopped since really. On top of that I love to crochet, I do botanical painting/drawing, I’ve recently started making felt (and even taught a class on it recently … don’t ask, just don’t ask … I think I have to do that about once every ten years to remind myself that it is NOT my vocation!), I read a lot and I’m learning Spanish. I love to go for walks in the country, I’m very interested in entomology and especially plant galls, but natural history in general and … I write a blog … about once a year for Annual RA Blog Week!!

I’d say all my hints and tips from hints and tips day earlier in the week also apply to ‘managing’ ones hobbies, and I have to say when it comes to pacing yourself I kinda fail … well, with this many hobbies how the heck am I supposed to pace myself? I mean really … BUT I do try (with some gentle nagging from hubby) to stop doing whatever crafty thing (or painting thing or Spanish thing or natural history thing) is occupying my brain by about 9 pm each evening so that I have an hour to wind down before I go to sleep; and I do try really hard to pace myself at least by saying if I’m, for instance, going on a felting workshop one weekend, I won’t do a painting workshop the weekend before or after. (Epic fail on that this last month, but never mind – I had a ball on both weekend workshops!)

RA has slowed down or almost stopped some of my hobbies – crochet is the biggest problem. Just last year I worked on, and completed, a big project crocheting a waistcoat (vest to those across the pond) which went brilliantly, but this year I’m finding my hands just won’t put up with hours at a time of crochet, so I’ve been concentrating more on other things – hey, no shortage of those … especially as I also work full time! The other one is going for walks – I still do, and I still love it, but walks have to be either carefully planned (so that I know I can stop and sit) or just short! On the whole they’re short! Luckily we have three beautiful nature reserves close to where we live so we have a good choice of walks – even though one of the reserves is the size of a postage stamp. Some of the hand sewing I really enjoy has slowed a bit too – I certainly do less of everything than I used to … maybe fatigue … maybe just age!

I love all of my hobbies and I’m very grateful that I haven’t had to give any of them up altogether. Having hobbies keeps me (relatively) sane and takes my mind off both work and health problems. In fact painting (when it’s going well) is like a good meditation – I just forget about the world and focus on the painting and can get lost in it for an hour or two and wonder where the time has gone. I find all my hobbies relaxing (unless I’m trying to teach them) and fun, and I think having fun and relaxation in life is vital to keeping things balanced and happy. I’ll never be a master of anything because I’m too busy having fun being a Jack of all trades, but that’s just fine by me.




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  1. Pollyanna this blog made me laugh. I love your first line. “Heavens to Murgatroyd, the woman with more hobbies than days of the year nearly forgot to write a third annual blog week post with the prompt hobbies!” Partly because I adore the word Murgatroyd and partly because you almost forgot. I am so glad I got to read it.

  2. I can relate to hands not working so well! I pretty much have given up stitching at this point also. I always loved the feel of the fabric.

  3. Ah, I love the phrase ‘heavens to Murgatroyd’ although I have no idea where it comes from…must look it up! So glad I remembered to post in the end and made you smile. 😊

  4. Aaw, sorry to hear that Cathy…that’s one of my biggest RA fears, that the hands one day won’t allow me to do all this stuff! I’m very lucky at the moment that it’s mild and well controlled.

  5. […] Penguin is also on my constant reading list.  Her blog about (Hobbies) is both informative and humorous.  Her comment about learning to sew “fabric that I think was […]

  6. […] Pollyanna Penguin’s RA Blog […]

  7. I’ve just learned to crochet and I wonder why would I want to learn this now with RA but I am glad I did. I have gotten tips from many who have carpal tunnel. It’s basically what we do with RA anyway. We do what we can, we rest when we need to (or should ha!). I have a hard time stopping many of my hobbies and tend to push past the limits. Of course I pay for it dearly.

  8. I think we have the same ethos on hobbies …aka lifelines. I’m paying for it today but hey, it’s giving me time to chill and catch up on more blog week blogs and other reading. 😊

  9. I have dabbled with many crafty hobbies over the years but I’ve fallen in love with mixed media art 🙂 I have found it a great way to switch off my mind and stay positive with my RA. Hobbies are definitely a life line 🙂 Thanks for sharing your positivity!

  10. So glad you’re finding art a great way to stay positive too! I find sometimes I can completely lose myself in art or needlework for a while and it really does help!

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