Readers may find it beggars belief, but these same hands knit both of these mittens. Sadly, the perfect mitten was the first ‘knitten’. It took me all of twenty-four hours under the watchful eye of my expert Nanny S. in Newfoundland. Clearly, I was able to channel the skill of my Newfoundland Foremothers on this one, not to mention ask my grandmother every step of the way what I should do next. No pattern by the way – just frequent trying-ons.
The second mitten, after returning to the Big Smoke, took over a month of dithering and was completed finally on the inaugural Friday Night Knitting Club just held here. It looks like it was made more for an Alien than human hand. What may not be clear are what look like several pairs of tiny vampire teethmarks, scattered around the second, deeply flawed mitt.
Along with living in infamy on the internet, this pair may be headed straight for a glassed-in frame on the wall where they can be preserved for posterity. For now, I am still a Newfie Princess in training.
My Nannies are my grandmothers. I have two, and one grandfather (Poppy) here in Newfoundland where I have come for two weeks. After a frenzied week of preparing for a clan gathering where we hosted approximately 300 guests at a hugely successful 65th wedding anniversary reunion, I am just now coming down from the high of family time, and getting enough sleep to be coherent. Cousins came from all over Canada and the US but now are trickling away in small groups every day. I’ll be the last one left.
It’s hard to be the last one left, as the mood shifts from fun and frivolity to nostalgia and guilt over not staying longer, even though you’ve been here the longest.
I don’t know anyone with three grandparents left at my age. I was 30 before I lost my first one. They are the anchors for me and my family. I know in my mind it can’t be, but in my heart, I still think they will live forever.
Knitting frantically during every spare moment has left my hands cramped, but provided more of that moving mediation that I have sought this year. There’s less of a caloric burn, but it’s still effective. I’ve finished knitting a small masculine throw/afghan for Poppy, to put over his lap when he’s booting around on his scooter. He likes to get out, but with poor circulation, he gets cold. My project has taken me more time than it would have either of my Nannies, but he will know I did it. The flaws are not subtle – it is clearly my creation. But, he will also know how much of me, how many thoughts and memories I had time for as I clicked away on the 4.5 sized needles, cramming a month’s worth of knitting into one short week.
Now, I’m stitching it together. It doesn’t look as polished as I’d like, but I love the feel of the high quality European yarn, and the colours, blocks of shimmery gray with deep brown and blue make me happy. I’d like to wrap him in it and keep him safe forever.