Monday, March 06, 2006

Pat on the back from mom

Believe me this doesn't happen often. In fact, it is so rare that it took a couple of days for it to sink in. But my mom paid me a compliment.

It was her birthday and I took her gift and card over. She lives about 10 minutes away but I only see her about once a month because growing up she repeatedly reminded all five of her children that she would not raise her grandchildren and she was raising us to be self sufficient so she would never be forced to take us back in.

All five have survived. None have moved back in. Mom is stingy with compliments. She thinks it's required so we remain self-sufficient and strong.

Now mom is an awesome knitter. She's been knitting for as long as I've known her. She's also an artist and has won national awards for her watercolors and colored pencil works. She tried for years on various occasions to teach me to knit. I resisted. I rebelled.

Last summer I gave in while trying to help my step-granddaughter to knit, I found out it really wasn't that hard. It's sort of like one of those games like checkers: takes a moment to learn and a lifetime to master. When I got home from the beach I went out and bought myself some knitting needles.

On one of those monthly visits to mom's house I showed her the scarf I had started. She invited me to her stash closet and unloaded a couple of garbage bags of yarn on me. Instant stash. I made scarves for numerous people for Christmas/Yule. Some of them sucked.

I made myself a whimple (sort of a cross between a scarf and a hat -- basically a tube that goes over the head and covers the neck. I experimented using fun fur, microspun yarn and even incorporated two colors. I have had many compliments on it. I know where all the mistakes are but still wear the thing daily.

Then I tackled my first sock. I frogged it. I started another in worsted weight using a basic sock pattern (you can see pictures below.. it's the green one).

Anyway, I took the lone green sock to my mom's to show her what I had done. She gushed over it. She was amazed. I had done the thing and turned the heal and done the gusset and didn't call her once. For a first sock it wasn't too shabby. I at least learned from it and now I'm on to a real sock with real sock yarn.

My compliment from mom, the one that still makes me smile? "I think you found your calling. You're good at this!"

Congrats mom, you succeeded. I can now feed myself, keep a roof over my head and now I know how to clothe my family as well.

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