Grits and Purls

Spinning yarns about the grit of life

Santa had come and left presents and filled stockings.

When I woke at 4:25am on Christmas Day, I indulged myself and got up. I turned on the lights of the Christmas tree and settled into the over-stuffed arm chair under a hand made afghan.

“This is nice,” I snuggled further into the chair, “my first uninterrupted time with the Christmas tree.”

Then, a voice from the top of the stairs, “Mom. Mom. I had a bad dream.”

“Do you want me to come up and lie down with you?” I walked to the bottom of the stairs and looked up at my daughter.

“No. Why is the tree on? Was Rudolph here? Did Santa come?”

In two seconds she was down. “Ladybug girl!” she exclaimed, spotting the doll sticking out of her stocking. She flew past the rock-n-roll guitar and the drum, her two requests of Santa.

I laughed and went to wake up Daddy, who thought he had prepared for Christmas morning by setting a 5:30am alarm.

And so began Christmas, one filled with lots of wrapping paper destined for the recycle bin, boxes to take down and store for next year, toys to put up in a proper place as soon as possible. And no quiet time before the Christmas tree.

Hat, mittens and scarf that are now supposed to be pink!

The entire season has felt like this—a little rushed. I finished the last of my knitting projects on December 23, a blue scarf to go with the hat and mittens knitted for my daughter. The mittens were the first ones I ever attempted. As I finished the first on one evening, I held it up to my husband and remarked, “See it even looks like a mitten.” To which he replied, “Yes! It does look like a mitten. Sure hope it’s not supposed to be a sock!”

On Christmas my daughter informed me that she had changed her mind, and she wanted a pink hat, scarf and mittens. I refrained from wringing her neck; after all it was Christmas Day.

I had also knit a vest for my mother-in-law, which ended up looking great (in my humble opinion), in spite of the fact one of the front panels had to be knit twice. Just in case it falls apart the first time she washes it, I made sure that I bought a really nice blouse to go under it.

For my sister, I knit a scarf of my own simple design and had a good friend make a scarf pin for it. She called from Atlanta and told me that it has kept her very warm on the first white Christmas of her life. That is really neat.

A scarf to keep my sister warm on her first white Christmas.

A scarf to keep my sister warm on her first white Christmas.

For my brother I knit a very professor-ly scarf out of the most delightful baby Alpaca yarn, a scarf perfect to accompany him as he rides around in his Elise.

For my daughter’s teachers, two knit hats. Hopefully they will be useful during playground supervising stints this winter.

For an aunt, who hails from Florida but lives now in Colorado, a “fishnet” scarf to remind her of special places, and for another aunt, who is still in Florida, a soft pink wrap to keep the chill off.

A simple wrap to keep the chill off.

That is the extent of my Christmas knitting this year, mostly simple things, but all done with love and care. Thinking of the people I love warmed by the work of my hands is a wonderful feeling, and even if some of the knitting at the end was a bit panicked, it brings me a sense of calm satisfaction now.

Santa, it turns out, put some yarn and needles in my stocking. Yarn for a hat for me, a hat that will have me knitting my first cable. So maybe, before the Christmas tree comes down, I will turn on the lights and spend some time quietly knitting and reflecting on all of the blessings in my life—thankful for all of the hustle that was this Christmas and all the people whom I am lucky enough to love and to knit for.

© 2010 Michele Arduengo. All rights reserved.

3 thoughts on “A Knitted Christmas

  1. Isobel says:

    Wow Michele. I am so impressed by all your beautiful knitting! (And slightly ashamed of mine–which is–alas-still on the needles), I am especially impressed that you have knitted your own designs as well! They are all wonderful gifts.

  2. Michele says:

    Hi Isobel,

    Thanks–that is high praise. Remember, I have kept my knitting very simple, some might say brainless, so that I can finish it. Finished my swirl hat today! Lots of that wonderful yarn left over too…


  3. Terri J says:

    Your knitting is beautiful. I am going to have to schedule some lessons one day. And yes, the KISS principle is very valuable!

    Merry Christmas.

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