A Beast of a Sweater

Waaaaaaaay back in November when things in my life seemed so (relatively) simple and straight forward started the Hurry Up Last Minute Sweater from Knitter's Almanac. As things stared to kind of go sideways in early December I enjoyed mindlessly knitting in the round each evening on body and then sleeves, making fake afterthought seams down the sides, joining everything together and working the unique yoke shaping around which this sweater is based.

So engaged was I in the simple knitting I maintained blissful ignorance of the alarming size of the thing.

Then everything went crazy over Christmas. The sweater, complete save the hem facings, had yet to be even pulled over my head for a quick peek. You really can't imagine my surprise when a couple of weeks ago it occurred to me I should try the thing on....

A. Beast.

I gigantic, ill fitting BEAST OF A SWEATER.  What to do?

See if it fits anyone else!

What followed was reminiscent of Goldilocks and the Three Bears...

My Beloved tried it on...
too small

Darling Daughter...


Number One Son...

Just right!

It looked great on him! My knitter's heart leapt for joy You know that feeling!

You probably also know how brief that feeling can be...

...he looked me right in the eye and carefully and nicely said... 

"Mom, you need to know I will never, ever wear it. Ever. Don't finish it thinking I will because I won't.

So now...I've thought about it and I have a new plan...work a crocheted steek and try the thing as a cardigan! (EZ's daughter Meg outlines just how to do it in the VK Holiday 2011 that's sitting on my coffee table in the living room - could the knit gods be trying to tell me something?)

More importantly will a simple steek tame the beast? I don't know, but I'm going to find out!


Learning Along the Way

The sisters (mine and my mother's) are going through the contents of my late mother's condo. Naturally its tough going but I am finding while we do it some interesting thoughts and observations are coming to mind.

(...a bit of background...rather than sorting through things geographically i.e. all the kitchen stuff then on to the living room etc., we're going about it by laying out like items (figurines or craft supplies for example) and then alternating turns, each choose one until the items are gone or everyone says "I'm out" then the remainder are collected for the grandchildren to consider or are packed up to go to charity.

We often laugh in recognition of the fact that if males were involved in this exercise we'd not be able to linger over mom's things as we are. But there aren't any guys and it feels like its the right way to proceed even though at times its utterly draining.)

Some of the things I find coming to mind... 
  • As the eldest, my childhood memories are quite distinct from those of my younger siblings. They see  coveted objects they weren't allowed to touch because of delicacy or value. I remember my responsibilities to keep things safe from rambunctious play in the house as I was routinely left "in charge". 
  • 'Seems I have a thing for squares.  When mom's watches were  laid out on a table. Those she bought all have circular faces. Those I purchased myself or on behalf of all of us were rectangular.  When it came to dividing up serving platters and dishes or vases; straight sided ones consistently ended up in my pile without me realizing that was how I was choosing. Interesting!
  • The items I select are generally free of colour and very practical - again without purposefully trying to do so. My sisters are drawn to ornamental/ colourful things. There is very little overlap in interest in one item or another. (Thank goodness!)
  • We're spread out along a spectrum of sorts with increasing age accompanied by a proportional decline in wanting to have/keep/own stuff. This isn't evident as we go through things but at the end of each day the youngest has more trips to the car than the next oldest and so on.  Once home, each of us has to accommodate the newly arriving mementos. My youngest sister's process is largely reorganization, those of us in the middle are purging stuff, me, to a larger degree than my next sister but my Aunt, the senior member of the group, who takes the least stuff home had purged the most from her place.
  • My mother wore good quality, classic clothes. She took care of them and accessorized her outfits to perfection. Hence she left behind a wardrobe we feel we need to carefully consider. She always said I had a narrow back and shoulders and my shorter, more visually petite sister, just the opposite. Meanwhile my mother seemed microscopic beside any of us. As we have tried on her coats and jackets it is shocking to see just how right she was, along with the fact some of her things, that fit her beautifully are too big for any of us! She had a good eye!
  • Speaking of her eyes, she wore very strong prescription glasses from the time she was three years old. She put them on every day the moment she woke up - we never saw her without them.  That being said, as my exhaustive efforts of pouring over many decades of family photos bore out, the woman never, ever had them on when she had her picture taken. EVER.  Even as a young child, sometimes you can see them in her hand but usually she has them behind her back so they aren't even in view.  She did not "see" herself with glasses even though you might think we would see her glasses as a natural extension of her but no..none of us feel any attachment to the many pairs of glasses she had.  They have no meaning to any of us. We must have internalized her view of them rather than developing our own.
Each time we get together one of us brings some home baked goody to keep us going, we make lots of coffee and do our best.  Sometimes the coffee and treats give way to a glass of wine (or two!) Numerous boxes of tissue throughout the place helps! We're getting the job done and I find I'm learning a bit about myself and my family along the way.