I think I've got it! I've tried and tried to learn how to crochet, and it just never made sense. My biggest success was a tiny bit around the edge of my hot water bottle cover. Inspired by the fun ripple blankets all over the place out there, I thought I'd give it another shot. I got out my trusty Reader's Digest Complete Guide to Needlework, and once again studied the pictures, step by step. I don't know why it clicked this time, but it did, and I'm just rippling along:
It was perfect timing, since we had to go to a funeral in L.A. this weekend, and I needed a good, portable project. We spent 24 hours straight with my mother in law, and the only way I can deal with that is to have something to keep my hands busy. I'm using this pattern which I think is a bit different than the other ripples I've seen, but it's nice and easy, so I like it. So far I'm using whatever bits of wool yarn I've got laying around, but I may have to get a few more colors.