Arts & Crafts · Happies · motivation

Granny Squares, Mandalas, and Perseverance

This week I managed to keep my New Year resolution to make a granny square a day. (I’ll put this week’s finished squares in the next post.) I’m glad. They’ve been a learning experience. Every square contains several different kinds of stitches. I’m not learning the stitches so well that I could do one on demand, but I’m being exposed to them, and practicing them enough so that if I did want to do them, I could do them, after a bit of review. As a plus, I’m using up old scraps of yarn that I have and can’t quite just get rid of. So it’s helping with my resolution to declutter, a small bit at a time.

It is also a lesson in patience, perseverance, and acceptance. Keep on going even if it looks lumpy. Don’t give up if you have 17 instead of 16 stitches. If your square has 5 sides, try again. In the end, you always come out with something fairly pretty. At least, you end up with something.

The other new thing I’ve become interested in with the New Year is mandalas—drawing and coloring them. (It helps that I got a set of 48 gel pens for Christmas from my lovely daughter-in-law.) I watched an online video of how to draw mandalas by hand. The video I watched showed the mandala being created just as it was drawn, freehand. Uneven lines and mismatched sides and all. Doing them myself is also teaching me that perfection is not necessary. That beauty can be seen even in the imperfect, the flawed.

Then I had an epiphany and realized that granny squares are a square mandala. In fact, they all start out round. For the first several rows, perhaps all but the last row, they are round, like traditional mandalas. So in doing a granny square a day, I’m also doing a mandala a day. Doing them does calm and soothe me, like contemplating a mandala is supposed to do for you.

4 thoughts on “Granny Squares, Mandalas, and Perseverance

  1. Your squares are looking wonderful. I think as we keep working on them they will look harder but actually will get easier. I can’t wait to make a whole project out of some of these square designs.


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