It Is All In The Twist

I make yarn. Of all the avocations in the world, I chose the thing that women and children used to do out of necessity not for pleasure. Not only do I make yarn, I choose to primarily do it with the most ancient of tools, a spindle. I am a throwback.

Three different spindles all with yarn in progress.

According to


1. something a person does in addition to a principal occupation, especially for pleasure; hobby: Our doctor’s avocation is painting.
2. a person’s regular occupation, calling, or vocation.
3. Archaic. diversion or distraction.

Spinning yarn as an avocation began when, as a yarn shop owner, I learned how to spin. The ability to make uniquely beautiful, artistic yarn consumed me. It is still my greatest pleasure, and is now closer to what I describe as a calling and my vocation.

Every time I pick up wool and a spindle so much more goes on other than simply making yarn. I do love the yarn and find the process satisfying. Beyond that there are some universal truths to be learned by performing this simple act.

The introduction of twist into the fiber gives the wool strength. Too little twist and the yarn falls apart. Too much and the yarn kinks up on itself and is unusable. It takes a great deal of practice for muscle memory to develop so that my hands know exactly what to do which frees my mind and spirit for other things.

Life is unpredictable and sometimes scary. The older we get the more difficult it is to accommodate the social changes around us. We like stability. I have learned that just like when making yarn, if I allow myself to get overwhelmed and psychologically tied in knots, I am useless to God and humanity. If I let go of my connection to God—my spindle—I crash and am useless. If I allow God to gently guide my life I will be strong enough to weather any situation. There is no need to be afraid. I don’t have to be in control, I just need to yield myself and trust that God is greater than any problem I might face.

Until tomorrow may your day be filled with those things that keep you connected and at peace…

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