A difficult gift

Last week I sent out 2 beautiful Baby Dale Norwegian sweaters. I made one, and my good friend Manning made the second. These have been sitting in my house for quite awhile waiting to be packaged up. Normally I would be so excited to get a gift out and imagine the surprise from the recipient. I hope that this generated a wonderful surprise also.

Almost a year ago, a neighbor passed away suddenly soon after giving birth to her second son. This was a person that I had met, but did not really know. Our quadrant of 3 x 6 blocks is very tight, and people support each other. This was devastating news, and a very sad wake. At a time like this, you always feel at a loss for something to do. Being a lifelong knitter, I always think of knitting. Knitting is a solution for gifts, and always a solution for my friends when they are having a difficult time. I also try to encourage others to start knitting to solve many of life’s problems. So, naturally, I thought that I should make a sweater to honor this new baby. I mentioned it to Manning, and we spent the summer thinking about it, buying yarn, and looking for the perfect pattern that both of us could do, one for each of the boys. Through Ravelry, Manning found the pattern that we both knit up. A beautiful top down Dale of Norway raglan. This was a very ambitious project for Manning, and her first Fair Isle! She had taken a couple of classes at Stitches, and delved into it completely. The sweaters both came out beautifully, using 2 colors the same, yet so distinct and individual.

And so they sat in my house. How do you write the letter explaining why you knit up a sweater for someone you barely know? I phrased it just as I did above, that I am a knitter and always think of knitting as a way to honor and bring comfort. When someone is sick, they always get a pair of hand knit socks. I hope that the boys wear and enjoy these sweaters. I initially walked the gift the 2 blocks from my house to theirs. Nobody was home, and there was no place to leave the package safely, so I drove a mile to mail a box to my neighbor just 2 blocks away. I hope that they have arrived safely, and that the love and wonderful thoughts knit into each sweater are felt.

And I hope that I never have to send out such a difficult package again.