Mom’s 80th BDay

My mother turned 80 a week ago today, and last Saturday we had a surprise birthday party for her. Amazingly enough, we were able to carry off the surprise and coordinate it all with email. Big thanks to my new sister-in-law Stacey who was the one who really pulled all of the details together. All of my siblings except one were able to attend. I am showing a photo of my mother wearing a shawl that I made for her. It is a Faroese shawl from Myrna Stahlman’s great book. Unfortunately, I cannot remember the yarn. This predates Ravelry, where I have been able to keep track of all of my projects, and actually record the yarn, pattern, needles, etc. I have 2 empty books that I had purchased in the past for this explicit purpose. They are pristine and blank—the internet is far easier, and digital photos make recording the projects a snap.

At the party was my mother’s long term friend Joan, who used to babysit for the twins when they were little and my mother was teaching. Because I had so much surgery on my legs, there were many years that I hardly went to school—especially those wonderful Middle School years. Instead, I would stay home with Joan and the twins (the youngest in our family). My school work would take all of an hour each day, and then I would sit and knit with Joan and watch game shows and the Soap Operas while the twins slept. I remember watching her and trying to knit as fast as she did. I would wait until she was starting a new row, and try to race her to the end. She never knew this until a few years ago when I told my mother. Her response was that I always seemed to be staring at her. I consider my love of knitting the great gift that I got from all of those years of operations and being on crutches. I am not sure that I would give up knitting even if it meant missing all of that pain. In a strange way, it has made me a stronger person, and is the definite motivation that lead me to college. Still, on the nights that my legs hurt, I might say different. But, if I can’t sleep, I stay up knitting….