This evening I spent some time knitting on my knitting machine. Mine is a Bond Ultimate Sweater machine--rather a "super Bond" because I have two of the machines put together to give me 200 needles, and the ability to knit wider fabric. I am working on a shawl as a Christmas gift, to be followed by bunches of fingerless gloves, leg warmers, and hat/scarf combinations. The machine gives me the ability to knit a lot faster, and finish many more projects. But it doesn't mean I stop hand knitting when I use the machine! I have also cast on for the second Baltic sock a couple days back, finished the lace top of the grey slipper sock yesterday, and cast on with leftover Lorna's Laces Sunshine for a pair of wrist warmers to match the Baltic socks today. Top that off with 8 hours in the office, and I can sing "I am woman, W-O-M-A-N."
Just today a friend asked if the machine took the fun out of knitting. The answer is no, because I always add some hand edging, or have to do some seaming on the piece. Also, I try to combine unusual yarns and colors to make it not just any old machine knit object. The knitting machine offers a different kind of relaxation. There's something calming about the swish, swish of the carriage as I move it back and forth. My grandson once said that it made him sleepy to listen to the sound it makes. I guess it is no different that combining hand knitting and spinning. One doesn't take the fun out of the other, and they fit together in a way that only knitters would understand!
All in all, I don't think there is anything more relaxing or enjoyable than knitting in any form. But then, I'm addicted to it! If I were required to go to rehab for my knitting and yarn addiction, I would have a lot of company--A LOT of good company!