A Big Day

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I have thought about writing many of these words and thoughts so many times over the last several months. Sometimes I didn’t know what to say or there was too much to say.  Some days emotions were too raw and other days I felt nothing. Some days I was ready to educate the world and then there were days I just didn’t want to talk about it any more and I felt I had nothing to offer.

We started Meatball’s growth hormone injections today. We have been anticipating this day for months and there were points when I was sure it would never come. Today was a really bittersweet day for me.  To the outsider this will all sound crazy…how can the day your son finally begins to receive treatment for his disorder be anything other than amazing? To the countless other Moms I have met whose children have this disorder they understand exactly where I am coming from. A child who produces growth hormones on their own grows normally and gradually. You don’t notice or really think about it until one day you put their pants on and they are two inches too short. For kids with GHD it’s not like that. They literally don’t grow. We will take a very active role in making him grow. It is something I think about and deal with everyday. From the fact that he is still in an infant carrier to trying to find shoes to fit him that he can walk in when his feet are the size of a child that doesn’t walk yet to the Mom in the park who upon finding out he is 18 months old makes a big fuss and carries on insensitively about how small he is and that her friend’s 9 month old is bigger than him (as if I wasn’t aware of all of this). The truth is I’m use to him looking this way. And if it weren’t for the fact that there are a lot of other health concerns associated with a lack of growth hormones I honestly wouldn’t care how slow he grew or tall he got. Some days it bothers me and I know as he got older his height would be more of an issues but to me…right now…he is perfect.

He has pretty much been this size since last August. Nine months! Nine months of him being the same size…of not needing to buy new clothes or only buying them because his wore out. And now possibly in a matter of weeks he is going to change before our eyes. He will get taller and thinner, his face will mature. Our baby won’t be our baby anymore (don’t even get me started on that::sniff).

Like I said if you haven’t been there this probably sounds like a woe is me post of a crazy mom. I am truly happy there is a treatment available for him. I am not happy that he will need daily injections through puberty and possibly the rest of his life. That is not an easy road and no one wants that for their child.

Today we started this journey with his first injection. Right now there are a lot of unknowns. Will this change his personality? Will it really help? Will he really get use to the injections? For a while every weird thing that happens (like tonight when he threw up a tiny bit) we will wonder if this is a side effect to the drug. How will this all effect him as a teenager and a young man?

I am hopeful though too. I am hopeful that in a few months he will look like all the other kids his age. I am hopeful that as he grows his legs will turn out like they should for a child his age and he won’t fall so much. I am hopeful that his hypoglycemia episodes will stop (and I am thankful that they aren’t as bad as some kids I know). I am hopeful that through all this he will become a strong and compassionate person. He has shown us already he lets nothing stand in his way and I pray that continues. That even if he has to work a little harder than other kids because of his size that he will preservers and be a role model to other kids who face challenges in their life. I hope this all will teach his brother and sister compassion to others and acceptance of those who are different as well.

This journey is really a rollercoaster of emotions and I know it really is just getting started. I am so thankful for the amazing support system we have to encourage us! I am thankful for the group of Moms I have met on line who “get it” in a way no one else can. I am thankful for modern medicine and that right now as things stand we have coverage for his medication. Most of all I am thankful for this amazing little person who keeps me on my toes daily, gives me frequent heart attacks, has taught me so much about being a Mom when I was pretty cocky and thought I knew what I was doing, has taught me to let go and be more present and has made me love so fiercely it hurts. So here we go on the next phase of this adventure and I just want to say to him, “Grow baby grow!”

 

There is no such thing as monogamous knitting

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I teach a lot of people to knit every year. I’m guessing over the past nine years that I have been teaching I’ve probably taught maybe 100-200 people to knit. One thing I have come to learn is that new knitters ask mostly the same questions. When it comes to the technical aspect of knitting they always ask if the last stitch gets knit the same way, they are concerned that the first stitch on the new row always looks weird and so it goes. I always like to reassure them that the things they struggle with and the questions they ask are very normal and all new knitters worry about the same things. Once my students get more comfortable with knitting part way through the class they start picking my brain. And even though every new group asks the same things I really love this part. It makes me feel good that I have aquired such a vast knowledge of a specific art form that people seek out my opinion and knowledge but I also love to see the spark and desire in them to get to that point. They always ask about whatever I’m knitting during their class…is it hard, how long have I been working on it? They ask what kinds of things I like to knit, how long would it take me to knit a hat, a sweater, socks, etc. ?How do you knit the pattern on so and so’s sweater? And then they ask how many projects I have going right now.

This is such a tough question. Do I talk about the two that I have been alternating between that week? The ones I have worked on that month? And what about the ones I haven’t touched in months? In YEARS? In the knitting world we call those UFO’s (unfinished objects). So let’s look at my current stash of knitting projects.

Starting at the top at twelve o’clock and working our way clockwise we have a shawl, a scarf, the band for a sleeve to a sweater for my husband,the beginnings of a cowl, the top of a Christmas stocking for my youngest, socks on the Magic Loop, a baby blanket for my son , an Afghan for a class I’m teaching and dead center another pair of socks. NINE projects! 9!!! When I went to find them all I was actually suprised at how many there were…I was thinking more along the lines of 5 or 6. And this isn’t counting my UFO’s…there are AT LEAST 4 of those (more are popping into my head as I type this).

To someone who is not a knitter or a die hard knitter this might sound crazy. You are probably thinking, “This girl has commitment issues or ADD or something. She can’t finish anything!”  But I assure you as far as knitters go I am completely normal. I went away on a knitting weekend with my friends for 48 hours last week. As I packed and had the kitchen table literally covered with yarn my MIL asked if we really knit when we are gone. I think I may have literally laughed in her face! I barely moved all day. Those wearing Fitbits laughed at their steps being under 1000 for the day. A few girls let that make them feel guilty and went for a walk but I refused to be guilted away from my precious kid free, husband free knitting time. I had taken about 6 knitting project for the weekend and darn it I was going to knit on all of them. But I wasn’t the only one.  The average amount of projects brought by group members was around six. I would venture to guess that if you asked any random serious knitter you found on the street they would have at least three WIPs (work in progress) going on at that moment

Part of the reason for this is a knitter must be prepared for any kind of knitting situation. While with my knitting group or teaching I need a mindless project that allows me to talk a lot and not really pay attention to what I’m doing. If I’m waiting in the lobby at my daughters dance studio I need a mindless project but it also needs to be small to fit in my purse…socks are great for this! And then there is the project that is challenging…that keeps you interested and really works your brain. The kind of knitting you need a silent room for. The kind that can make you cry and cheer with a rush of adrenaline for figuring out the pattern all in the same town. Then throw in any other mandatory projects like the baby gift you need to finish, the charity hats you said you would donate, the tiny mini mochimochi gnomes, mermades and chickens you just have to knit because they make you smile like a fool and make for adorable Instagram pictures and the projects really add up quickly.

No this isn’t crazy. Not crazy at all. Ask any knitter…they will most likely agree with me. What’s crazy is I will let this stress me out. I will scold myself. Every January I set the resolution to finish all projects before I start new ones and by February I’ve got my eye on the next trendy pattern. But I’m turning over a new leaf. I want to knit all the patterns and I want to knit them now! I will start a new pattern every night until I run out of yarn (HA!) if that makes me happy! When it comes to knitting I am a loose woman…a falanderer…I’ve got a project in every port (or room in the house) and I don’t care who knows it!

Breasts, Lace Leaves and Prayers

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IMG_2077Since this is partially a knitting blog I thought I should actually write about knitting! I have knit a few projects over the last few years that I never got to write about and really wanted to. One of them was a prayer shawl I knit for a friend. While technically the Leaf Lace Shawl is not a prayer shawl I used it for that purpose.

Back in September of 2014 my family and I traveled down to North Carolina for a long weekend because my nephew was getting baptized. We flew in to Norfolk, VA. As we were getting to our rental car and loading it up I turned my phone back on from airplane mode. It started buzzing like crazy with tons of FB messenger messages. As I looked at my phone I saw a long thread of messages from the other moms in our play group. We are all extremely close…like family really. I caught words like “crying” and other things that lead me to believe that something was very wrong. I opened the thread and scrolled a long ways back to the first message. It was from Chris. One of the moms I probably spend the most time with and possibly one of the sweetest, most gentle women I know. She was writing to tell us she had breast cancer. I gasped. I couldn’t breathe. My head started swirling. The kids kept asking me what was wrong but I couldn’t say it out loud…I just handed the phone to my husband to read for himself. I honestly don’t remember if I cried or not…I got in the car and started reading all the messages. Of course they were all positive and super supportive. I remember messaging one of the other moms and asking if I was the only one freaking out. I just kept thinking, “we’re too young to have a friend with breast cancer”. I was 33 at the time and I believe Chris was 36. We had an hour and a half drive to my Dad’s house and Chris was all I could think about. I needed to do something. I needed to do something for Chris. My hands were antsy. I needed to knit her something. I couldn’t get past the feeling that I just needed to knit her something. All the yarn I brought on my trip was tied up in projects and wasn’t right anyway. My Dad lives in the middle of nowhere… there are no yarn stores around and none between Norfolk and his house. At least none that I knew of. Why did I have to be stuck so far away from my friends when I found this out and in the middle of nowhere and WHY ARE THERE NO YARN STORES?! All that weekend in my free time I did the only thing I could do…I poured over Ravelry looking at patterns for shawls. It had to be perfect. Chris is an amazing artist who loves the outdoors. She loves trees and does incredible paper cuttings of them and I wanted something that reflected that. After hours of searching I settled on the Leaf Lace Shawl.  I couldn’t wait to get back to PA and head to the yarn shop for the perfect pumpkin orange yarn. I headed there first thing Monday morning. The owner helped me pick a beautiful, soft pumpkin orange yarn and I went home and got started right away. Initially I wanted to have the shawl done for when Chris started chemo. I desperately wanted to knit her something beautiful and warm to wrap up in during her treatments, I wanted it to hug her and comfort her. I wanted when she wore this to feel like I was hugging her.  It was almost as though I thought if I knit something perfect enough I could knit away the cancer which sounds so silly but if I could have knit it away I would have. The pattern was more difficult than I realized. Looking back I don’t really think it was above my skill level but it required a level of focus that is hard to come by as a Mom of two young kids. I also think there was a lot of emotions going into this project that a lot of my other projects don’t have. I was putting immense pressure on myself to make it perfect.  Chris started chemo a few weeks later and the shawl was not done. I got side tracked for a bit because I knit her a hat with interchangeable flowers so she could remain stylish as she lost her hair. Every time I came back to the shawl I would get a row or two done and then make a mistake. Every right side row of this shawl increases in stiches so making a mistake and needing to rip out rows every few rows is extremely time consuming and as the stitches started to add up once row could take up to almost an hour.  I made a new goal of having the shawl done for when she finished chemo. Chris finished chemo in February and I was not done with the shawl. I continued to make mistakes and get upset. When I think of this shawl I think of the Paula Abdul song that says “two steps forward, two steps back” . New goal…get the shawl done for when she goes in for her mastectomy. By this point it was March and I was having a lot of pain in my hands which is always a signal to me that I’m pregnant…things swell, my fingers get achy and tingly and I have a hard time knitting.  Low and behold I was pregnant…my hands never lie!  I was also so frustrated with the shawl that I just needed to put it away for a while. I started to think I was never going to finish this thing. Around that time I talked with another friend who was also a breast cancer survivor. She suggested that I give Chris the shawl when she was all done with everything. Chris still had to go through several weeks of radiation and I believe another surgery and wouldn’t be done until mid-fall… about a year from when I started. This seemed like a perfect and do-able goal. I took a nice long break from the shawl and around August started working on it again. I was due with our baby in the very beginning of November and I knew if I didn’t finish before that it would never get done. I hustled over the next three months to finish. As Chris finished up radiation and her hair started growing back I put the finishing touches on the shawl. About a week before I had the baby I took the shawl over to Chris. I had never told her I was knitting it for her. As I presented it to her I was able to tell her how I felt when I found out she was sick and how the whole year I had worked on this shawl and prayed for her and thought of her the whole time I knit it. I never knit without knowing where the project is going and I always think about the person for whom I am knitting but I don’t think I have ever knit so many prayers and healing thoughts into a garment before. My knitting students often ask me what the hardest thing I have ever knit is and I always say this project. As far as knitting skills go, yes it was hard but emotionally it was so much harder. There were times I could do nothing for her but knit. I knit the day she started chemo, I knit the day she had her mastectomy, I knit and prayed the whole year. The shawl came out beautiful. I was very proud of it but being able to give it to my sweet friend a year later, my sweet healthy in remission friend was the best part of all. It was an answer to my prayers and the thousands of other prayers that were being sent up for her. I can knit beautiful things but my friend Chris can kick breast cancers ass like no one else with a strength, dignity and smile on her face that to this day still brings tears to my eyes and inspires me.

 

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Snack Day

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Ella calls him The Boy of Joy and he truly is. From the moment that Oliver was born he has been this ball of energy with joy bursting out of every seam. We have always said that we have survived the last 3 years of complete sleep depravation because he was just so happy that it really was hard to be annoyed that he doesn’t sleep. So it came as no surprise to me how excited he was to be the one to bring snack in on the second day of preschool. Once we got him to understand that he would be sharing the snack and that a single container of pumpkin yogurt would not work he was all in! So Mike took him to the store one evening and Oliver picked out a container of apple cinnamon muffins and some grapes to share with his friends.

The morning of his snack day Oliver could barely contain himself…his sister could not be sent off to school fast enough so that it would be his turn to go. As I began to unload the boys from the van at school I explained to Oliver I would need help carrying everything. “It will be heaby?”he asked me. How I wished he would always talk this way I thought to myself. “No” I said. “We’ll put the muffins in your back pack.” He hoisted his truck back pack onto his back and as we headed down the stairs he proudly stated, “I got a back pack full of muffins!” “Yes you do!” I said as my heart burst. He is so tiny with blonde hair that practically glows but he talks in sentences beyond his years. His excitement for everything is so contagious and I find myself hanging on his every word.

As we waited in the hallway until his class opened Oliver stood impatiently hugging his muffins to his chest. Every person who walked by him he tried to tell about his muffins that he was so proud of but his muffins often went unnoticed as people rushed in to drop off their children. Oliver soon realized if he wanted people to notice his muffins he was going have to take more drastic measures.

A grandmother dropping off her granddaughter in the older class came walking down the hall. Oliver quickly assumed the position of a sumo wrestler, a tiny 3 ft tall sumo wrestler and attempted to physically block the older woman’s way with his muffins and little body. “I got muffins!”, he said. She moved to the left. “I got muffins!” he said as he moved to the left. She moved to the right. “I GOT MUFFINS!!!”, he said as he moved to the right. “Oliver! Let the lady through!!” “I’m sorry. H’;s very excited about his muffins.”, I said as I pulled him in close to me.

In between body checking unsuspecting parents with his muffins Oliver would ask, “It time to go in now?” “No buddy not yet.” Five seconds later, “Now?.” “No buddy not yet.” Five seconds later, “Now?” “No buddy not yet.” FINALLY his teacher opened the door and greeted us good morning. Without looking back at me to say good-bye Oliver walked in to his classroom stating of course, “I got muffins!”, presented them to his teacher and off he went.

A Special Frock

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I LOVE knitting for babies! I’m at the age where all my friends are having babies so I do A LOT of baby knitting! I almost always have one baby project in the works. I’ve had people ask me why I don’t just knit a bunch of baby projects all at once so that I have a stash of them and can just grab one when I need a gift. One thing I have realized about myself over the last few years is how much of myself and how much thought and prayer I pour into the items I knit. I NEVER knit something just to knit it and then decide later who it is going to. All of my projects start out with a purpose or destiny if you will. I always know who they are going to and so when I am knitting that project the whole time I am thinking about it’s recipient and praying for them. Love, prayers and good thoughts are poured into every stitch of my projects. I’m not sure what my mind would do if I were to knit something that had no end destination.

I have wanted to knit the Fiesta Frock for a long time but there was a long streak where all my friends, myself included, were having boys! So finally I found out a friend was having a little girl and not just any friend…she is really special for so many reasons. We haven’t actually been friends for very long but as soon as we became friends she was all in! She is always there if I need someone or something, always offering help or to bring coffee if she is stopping for some for herself. She texts everyday just to say hi and see how my day is going. She is one of the sweetest, caring and most thoughtful people I know. She also has one daughter who was almost two by the time her baby sister was born. And sadly these two sisters have a big brother who they never had the chance to meet. I did not know my friend when she lost her sweet son at only 4 months of age and so I never had the joy of knowing him. Knowing his two sisters though and how amazing they are makes me grieve a friends baby that I never knew because I know he was just as incredible as his sisters.  We talk of him often, I try to help her keep his memory alive by listening to her talk about him and helping her commemorate certain dates in his life.  She is very open about talking about her unimaginable loss and she is one of the strongest woman I know. So when I found out she was expecting this new little girl I knew I needed to knit something very special for her. I often just knit hats or something small for babies but I knew this little miracle needed something extra special as did her Mama. The Fiesta Frock that I had longed to knit seemed perfect. I think I prayed harder for this little lady while I knit her frock than I have for any other baby. I hope that as she wore it she felt extra love and warmth coming from the fibers.

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One of the features that drew me to this pattern was that I would get to pick out buttons for it. I LOVE picking out buttons…it’s always my favorite part a project. The picture of the dress in the pattern book had these adorable parakeet buttons on the shoulder….I was able to find them but they really didn’t match my yarn I had picked. I settled on the stars and I think they were the perfect touch.

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I wasn’t super crazy about how this pattern was written. It came from the book Sock Yarn One Skein Wonders. I use this book a lot and I like the finished projects but the patterns aren’t always written the best. If I made this dress again I would probably follow some of the pattern changes people on Ravelry suggested. This was my first set in sleeve so I ended up doing both sleeves twice because the first time I was done with both they were uneven. I pulled one out and redid it. It looked much better the second time and the sleeves were even but the first sleeve didn’t look as good so I had to rip that one out and re-knit it. I knew by this point I was being slightly neurotic because really probably I was the only one that would notice any difference in the two sleeves…it’s a sickness I have…I realize that…I’m working on it. My perfectionism paid off though…the dress got second place for children’s dresses in our county fair!

Oh and I knit a sweet little pair of shoes to go with the dress!

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A Month of Milestones

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The month of August has been a big one for our family this year. It has been full of milestones for every family member which has made it a bit of an emotional month for this Mama, all for wonderful reasons.

First in the beginning of the month this little guy:

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turned into this little guy:

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Being the second child sometimes certain milestones don’t seem to be as big of a deal or  can easily get over looked a little more than they did with the first kiddo but Mr.O  turning 1 still felt like a really big deal to me. It has been such an amazing year since he joined our family. There is still so much to learn about parenting and motherhood even with your second child because of course they are going to be exactly the opposite of what your first child was. Mr. O has taught me so much this year. I learned I had a capacity to love even more than I thought possible, to multitask even more than I already was as a mother of one,  and that I could be stretched in ways and circumstances that I always thought I would crumble under, for example learning to function and go about my daily life on four or less hours of sleep for months on end. Mr. O has been an amazing addition to our family and other than his sleep issues the transition to a family of four couldn’t have gone any better. It has been such a wonderful and joyous year for our family because of this little man and we are so excited to see what the next year with him brings.

The next big thing that happened this month is that this little lady:

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turned in to this little lady:

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(I’m pretty sure it didn’t happen over 5 years but actually over night)

Miss E started kindergarten! I worked at an elementary school when I was pregnant with Miss E and now that is where she is attending school which is very cool. I have been a stay-at-home-mom since Miss E’s arrival in 2009 and while she did attend preschool for two years it was only part day and not every day so this milestone is going to be a huge change for our family. I was not very emotional about her starting preschool but kindergarten has been a whole other story.This is an exciting time in our family for sure. Miss E is very ready for school and it is fun to see her excitement over it. I have  really enjoyed the last two days, sitting down and having a snack with her when she gets home and hearing about her day. However, this is the end of an era for her and I. We had 5 whole years together at home everyday! Other than summers we will never have that again and that makes me sad. I’m not sure in another 5 years how much of it she will even really remember, there is already so much she has forgotten. Of course now that that part of her life is over and I have been thinking back through all that we did, toddler art, music, gymnastics, Mommy and Me Pilates, dance, preschool gymnastics, and second guessing everything I did with her. Maybe we should have stayed home more, maybe we should have done this activity instead of that, I should have played with her more, I let her watch too much tv, I’m going to do it so much better with her brother,blah, blah, blah. Of course, I did a fine job but I think this is all part of the process of letting a little bit of her go, questioning how I have done as a parent. I’m sure I will do this again for junior high, high school, college…everything. I think the other big scary party for me has been letting her ride the school bus. This little lady just moved out of a 5 point car seat about two weeks ago into a booster seat which was a big step for us so the idea of putting her on this giant tin can with a bunch of kids I don’t know all bouncing around and not being strapped down to anything while some little old lady who I’ve never met drives them through town doesn’t sit so well with me. But I have another child at home that needs to take naps so driving her to school myself wont work so well.So in all this I just need to trust…trust God…the other adults….trust her and who I have raised her to be so far…just trust that it will be ok. (By the way, I’m a bit of a worrier and not very good at trusting at times so I’m sure this will be a learning process)

And the last big milestone that happened this month happens tomorrow.

13.5 years ago these two kids who were best friends started dating:

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10 years and 3 months ago they got engaged:

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10 years ago they got married:

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10 years later all the above mentioned grew into this:

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It has been a wonderful 10 years. I have been thinking about whether it turned out like I thought it would or not. Other than my career and where we live I’m not really sure how I thought things would turn out. I have always said if we had three kids I would like one to be like me, one to be like my husband and I figured the third would be a funny mix of the two of us because we are polar opposites. So far we have the Little Abbey and the Little Mike…we’ll see what we get next time! Would I change how anything has turned out so far? Absolutely not! Everything we have done has led us to where we are…the career and location choices I had thought we would make have all worked out for the best, especially where we live. I love the fact that we still live where Michael and I met. Penn State is so dear to me because it is my alma mater but also because it is where my family began. I love walking around campus with our kids and pointing out all the locations that are special to Michael and I . There is something so sweet about being able to take your daughter to the spots you fell in love at, on a campus you fell in love with. I’m sure there are little things about our life that have not turned out like I thought or hoped they would 10 years ago but that is just part of life and I love the life that we have built together. I am so proud of our family and our little life together. I hear so many woman complaining about their husbands or needing a break from their husband and it makes me so sad. My husband is my favorite person to be with and probably the only person in the world that I never get tired of being with. That is not to say that we never fight or disagree but even when I’m mad at him I still would rather be sitting next to him than anyone else. I take great pride in our marriage and our family. We have been blessed beyond what I probably ever imagined. This month has brought about a lot of reflection in our house…reflecting on the last five years of having kids and reflecting on the last ten years of our marriage. Husband and I have had some very sweet times reminiscing this weekend and it has made me that much more  excited for the next ten years. I don’t know where in the world we will be in ten years or what we will be doing, who knows…by that point there might even be more of us! But one thing I do know is that as long as our little family is together we will be just fine because us being together is all that truly matters.

 

Blankies and Blogs

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I’m back and  ready to rejoin the blogging world!!! I’ve actually been ready for a long time but with two munchkins at home with me now time for extra activities like writing  is not something I come by easily. As I started thinking about blogging again I thought about how much I have changed in the past year since I have had my son. It seemed to me that I needed a different blog name that suited me more. While I really liked the name Knit and Wit, it added a lot of pressure to my blog posts to make them funny or witty and sometimes I just want to write about my day or my knitting projects and there isn’t always funny tid bits to add in. When I introduce myself to people there are pretty much two things I always say about myself….I am a mother and I am a knitter. Woolly Mama seemed to fit me much better. So here were are…same person (more or less), same blog about knitting and motherhood, new name….I hope you enjoy it and visit often!

I finished a project lately that really tugged at my heart strings more than many of my projects. I knit my son who is almost one a blanky. Not an afghan meant to toss on a bed or the back of a couch but a blanky that is meant to be snuggled and drug around everywhere with him. It is meant to comfort and keep him warm, be puked and peed on, be a cape or tent, protect him from monsters and sooth his sick little body. It will hopefully be his favorite blanky and it was made by his Mama with more love than I think I have knit into anything.

When my daughter was born there were many blankets knit and crocheted and for her. I of course had my favorite made by a dear friend of mine who is a very talented knitter that I pushed on my daughter while she was too young to care but eventually a different blanky crocheted by my Mom won out as her favorite (you can read about that fiasco at my old blog ) and that is the one that must go everywhere with us and no other children are allowed to touch because they might spit on it or something. I have a favorite blanky as well that my Grammy Cramer crocheted for me. I slept with it until the day I got married. I still have it…hidden in a safe place and when life gets to be too much I will pull it out and snuggle it for a few minutes…flipping the soft flaps between my fingers like I use to. There is not much than can comfort and relax me quite like my blanky can. In my book blankies are very special items.

Being the second kid you get the shaft in a lot of areas and  I guess the blanky area is one of them…that and I’m sure people thought I was making him one myself. Knitting blankets is a huge commitment. It takes a lot longer to knit one than to crochet so I’ll admit I was really hoping someone else would make him one. So this past winter I decided Oliver needed a blanky, so I went to my local yarn shop and picked out colors of yarn that matched his bedroom and chose a chevron blanket pattern that matched the bedding in his room and I set to work. I just recently finished the project. It was a great project because the pattern was easy to memorize so it made for nice TV knitting. It just took a long time to finish and there were also a lot of other projects thrown in the mix while the blanky was being made.

As I started knitting I became almost addicted to this pattern. As I said it was a nice relaxing pattern because it was easy and didn’t require a lot of thought but I also just wanted to finish it so badly for him. As a woman we have the incredible privilege of growing a life inside our bodies and bringing that life into the world. Many of us then get to sustain that little life by feeding them milk directly from our own bodies. It truly is an incredible and profound thing. While I was knitting this blanky I couldn’t help but think how amazing it was that I could provide warmth for him. With my skills and my body I could theoretically provide just about everything this little guy truly needs and that this blanky is just one more way he can feel comforted by  his Mama even when I’m not with him.

Normally when I’m knitting something if I make a mistake I have a hard time leaving it there even if others wont notice it. It is really an issue sometimes because I can get a little obsessive and loose precious sleep fixing a mistake that no one else would ever notice and if I don’t fix it then the mistake just glares at me every time I look at the finished item. I did go back and fix some really big mistakes in this blanket (the pattern was so easy that I often completely stopped paying attention and would realize I have gotten off somewhere along the way) but there were a few points where I didn’t notice the mistake until it was so far back that  I would have had to ripe out more than half my work to fix it and the mistake was very small. I would hold the blanket up and stare at it, agonizing over whether or not to fix it. Mike would tell me it wasn’t noticeable and to leave it and I would still agonize over it. I ended up leaving some of the mistakes and I’m glad I did. It makes the blanky even more home made looking and more human in a way. I hope it will show Oliver someday that it is ok to make mistakes, that we can learn from them and that our mistakes can give up character and make us unique. I think in a way this blanky not being perfect helped me to grow as a knitter. As a little side note  (really only knitting people will appreciate this) I also grew working on this project because I was very disciplined and wove in all my ends as I went along with the project which I NEVER do…it was so nice to just be done when I bound off at the end of the project.

I gave the blanky to Oliver a few weeks ago and he seemed to really like it. He is still a bit young to carry it around with him all the time and be very attached to it but I hope he grows to love it and cherish it because I’m not sure I have ever knit anything that has evoked so much emotion in me. There was so much love knit in this little blanky that I’m almost positive when I lay it over him at night he feels like I’m giving him an extra good night hug.

 

The colors are navy blue (looks a little black here), grey, orange and aqua which are the main colors in Oliver's room.

The colors are navy blue (looks a little black here), grey, orange and aqua which are the main colors in Oliver’s room.

 

SAM_1284

 

I think he likes it!

I think he likes it!