Wednesday, 26 October 2011

The Required Things

Reference List

Christiansen, C. H. & Townsend, E. A. (2010). An introduction to occupation. In Christiansen, C. H. & Townsend, E. A. (Eds.) (2010). Introduction to occupation; the art and science of living (2nd ed., 1-34). United States of America: Pearson Education.

Keilhofner, G. & Forsyth, K. (2009). Activity analysis. In Duncan, E. A. S. (Ed.) (2009). Skills for practice in occupational therapy (91-103). London: Churchill Livingstone

The Free Dictionary A (2011). Definition; labour. Retrieved 5th October 2011, from

The Free Dictionary B (2011). Definition; work. Retrieved 5th October 2011, From

Thompson, D. (1995). The concise oxford dictionary of current english. Oxford: Claredon Press.

Comments on Other Student Blogs

Saturday, 22 October 2011

Blog Six: Practical Considerations

Practical Considerations are things that are essential for someone to participate in an activity, such as the tools needed (Christiansen & Townsend, 2004). These things are very important because if they are not right the whole task could be compromised. The easiest way for me to explain this is to explain what it would be like trying to do crochet with a knitting needle, rather than a crochet hook. A knitting needle is a straight object that is very good for knitting (when you use two of them together), but is not like a crochet hook (which, as you may have guessed, is not straight but has a hook on one end) the only similarity between the two is that they are often made of the same material. So... to prove the point of practical considerations being important, I thought that I would try to crochet using a knitting needle, and trust me it was not easy. The idea of a crochet hook is that you can use the hook part to pull each stitch through the last one. With a knitting needle you do not have the hook so you have to move the needle in a very difficult way and try very hard not to drop the stitch. After dropping the stitch almost every time I finally gave up and went back to my crochet hook. I now have a strange appreciation for my crochet hook. It does not look fancy, in fact it looks very boring. But if you come to my house and pick up my crochet hook and say;
“Is that some kind of strange knitting needle”
Then trust me, you will get told exactly what it is and about how handy it really is.

Monday, 17 October 2011

Blog Five: Ambience

Ambience is defined as the surroundings or atmosphere of a place (Thompson, 1995). This means that when talking about ambience we are talking about the environmental aspect of the activity and the feeling within that environment. When I sit down to my crochet I have to have the environment just right, so that I am able to relax, rather than worry about anything.
I make sure that all my house work is done , I am mostly up to date with my study, I do not have to make dinner for another hour, so I turn on the T.V. Ok... Now I can sit down and work on that bag that I have been trying to finish for a while now. Time to relax and forget about everything else that has been going on. I focus on the large stitches that are making up the main part of the bag and then the smaller stitches in a row to make a pattern. One day I will get on to the handles of the bag. The phone is ringing now, so it will not be today.
When I am doing my crochet it is essential that I do not have any distractions. My house must be reasonably tidy and it is easiest if it is only me home. No one needs to know what I am making and no one needs to know how I am making it. All the person I am making something for has to worry about, is what the finished product looks like. And that is not that important to me. It is more fun trying to figure out how to do different patterns. I have only ever been taught one particular stitch, and I cannot even remember what that is, but give me time and my own space and I reckon I could figure out almost any stitch that even the most skilled crotcher can do. I do not proclaim to be that good at crochet but it is my way to chill, in a cleanish house and a lonely room. And you can only ruin that by interrupting me.

Monday, 10 October 2011

Blog Four: Spirituality and Connections

Affordances are things that both induce and support the doing of an activity, such as what attract someone to do an activity (Christiansen & Townsend, 2010). For me crochet is has more of a spiritual attraction than a physical attraction. For example my crochet is more about self expression and connections with my family, rather than the finished product. My crochet is a way that I express myself because I am making something completely individual, something which nobody has ever made one the same, this also gives me a strong sense of pride in my work. Crochet also connects me with my family because it is something that no one else in my immediate family can do, so it is something that sets me apart from my many siblings and contributes to my identity within the family unit. I am also able to make things for my sisters and my nephews (and one day nieces), and when I see them wearing a hat that I have made them it helps me to feel closer to them.
Sitting here and thinking about crochet makes me feel sad because it reminds me of my Uncle who passed away a few months ago. He used to have this poncho that my Aunt had made for him, I remember that poncho was the reason that I wanted to learn crochet. He used to wear this poncho all the time. I remember talking about it with my Aunt and then her teaching me how to make a poncho by crocheting it. The poncho that I was making was the same colour as my Uncles but I never even finished making it, I am not even sure where the unfinished product is now, but I know that I will always have that connection with my Uncle and my Aunty because of that poncho and crochet.

Wednesday, 5 October 2011

Blog Three: Labour versus Work

The Free Dictionary A (2011) describes Labour as productive work, a particular task or job that is of a difficult but essential nature. It also describes Work as something that someone is doing, making or performing and also as devotion to an occupation or undertaking (The Free Dictionary B, 2011).
I am going to  elaborate on these two definitions using a table that I drew up in class. I have chosen two occupations, one I view as Labour and the other as Work. My Labour occupation is cooking (food preparation) and my Work occupation is obviously crochet.

Labour - Cooking
Work - Crochet
What are my feelings about this task?
 I HATE IT!! I would prefer that someone else did it. It feels like a burden
What are my feelings about this task?
Helps me to relax, I like being productive, like being creative
Why do I need to do it?
To eat. To feed my husband J
Why do I need to do it?
To relax, to keep the balance in my life
What would happen if I did not do this task?
Would be broke from buying takeaways
Would gain weight from eating processed food
Would not be very healthy
What would happen if I did not do this task?
I would not have the connections that were explained in my first blog (with my family)
I would probably just do my knitting J
How does it say who I am?
1.       Lazy not wanting to cook
2.       Labour of love for my husband J
3.       I love to eat so I have to cook
How does it show who I am?
1.       Active Relaxer, need to be doing something while I relax rather than just watching TV or doing nothing.
2.       Shows that I am creative
3.       Shows my identity within my family

I think that this table shows that cooking is a Labour that I do not like  but it is essential for my (and my husbands) survival. While crochet is something that I choose and like, to do.

Saturday, 24 September 2011

Blog Two: Ergonomics

Ergonomics is the study of people's efficiency in their working environment (Thompson, 1995). It usually concerns things like how a chair should be made so that you sit in it the right way. . When it comes to crochet the definition from the Oxford Dictionary does not show the true spirit of doing the craft. This definition is more to do with something where production is the most important thing. For me, doing crochet is not so much about the finished product as it is about doing the craft. The only time when my crochet is about efficiency is when someone asks me to make them something, then I feel like I have to get it done by a certain time. I suppose that ergonomics is also about comfort, which ensures that the job gets done, and when you consider that then it has a lot to do with me doing my crochet. I always find a comfortable spot on the couch in my lounge which is optimal for me to do my crochet because it is close to where I keep all my wool and crochet hooks and knitting needles (down the side of the couch) and there is also good light from the large windows next to the couch. this is however not optimal when it starts to get dark because there is not very good lighting. I also, for some reason, have the television on while I am crocheting, this sometimes seem like a waste of time because I do not even watch it. The times when my crochet is compromised is when I have been doing it for a while and my fingers start to hurt. I also used to do a different technique and after a while my shoulder would start to hurt. I have now changed my technique so that I am more efficient and more comfortable.

Wednesday, 14 September 2011

Blog One: Me and Crochet

My chosen activity for this class is crochet. I was taught to crochet by my Aunty Denise when I was 12. She started me on making a dark grey poncho. I never finished the poncho and did not crochet much after that until I was married. My grandmother had made me this cool orange hat and i wanted to make one but could not figure out how to knit a hat like she had, so i decided to try to crochet it. I taught myself how to do different stiches by reading them out of a book that I got from the library and I also remembered the general concept of how to do it from my aunty. I had done a couple of hats and showed my aunty what I had done and she said that I had not done any proper stitch but had made up my own stitch.
Crochet is now something that helps me to zone out from the rest of the world and because I am an active relaxer it is my way of relaxing. It is also my way of giving something of myself to other people by making them hats, with my own individual style.
Below are some example of the hats that I have made (nicely modeled by my sister, Julia and my mother:

So... Why did I choose crochet as my activity to analyse?
Keilhofner and Forsyth (2009) say that when doing an activity analysis for a specific client it is important to pick an occupation that represents the clients choices, habits and personal capacity. I think that crochet represents all of those things for me because it is my choice to do crochet, it is something that I try to build into my routine so that I have the right balance in my life and it is also something that I am very capable of doing. It is also something that I enjoy doing.