A big ball of yarn.

Oh. I really don’t have much. No yarns to spin.

As such, this could be a good day to give some lessons here in crocheting. If I knew how to crochet. But I don’t. Maybe I am thinking about it because I watched a kid on the news the other night. He was a bit of an “overactive” kid. So his Mom showed him a crocheting video on YouTube. Well. The kid took to it like a fish to water. And he is super fast. They call him “The Crochet Kid.” He crochets an entire hat in about 30 minutes, or something. Now, he has this massive following and he gives crocheting lessons to anyone who cares to have one.

My Mom was a knitter. She used to make afghans. Loads and loads of afghans. Earlier, in her heyday, she would fashion a hat, or a sweater. But, they were never quite right. The sweater might have a third arm, or the hat might work for one of the ConeHeads on SNL. She did better when she stuck to large square outcomes, like scarves. And those afghans.

She used to make them as presents for us. As grown-up kids. We’d get them at Christmas, or on our birthdays. But the thing of it was. Mom and Dad were Depression Babies. They were always scrimping on money. I’m sure that’s how they navigated raising seven kids. Anyway, she was cheap. So she would buy her yarn on sale. And, although I’ve never hung out in yarn stores, I imagine these huge bins in the center aisles, filled with all the types and colors of yarns that no one else wanted. The stuff that had been sitting on the shelves for four years. So the Yarn Store Manager would occasionally clear the old stock and throw it in the Bargain Bin. Fifty percent off, I bet. Or more.

Those were our afghans. The thing about yarn that no one else wants is the color. The bargain yarn was other worldly. There were these flaming hot tangerines, and puke colored pea greens. Sometimes they would be variegated. Multicolored. Those were the worst.

At any rate, on our birthdays, we would get a reused bulging Elder-Beerman’s box. And before I flung open the lid, I would say a quick and breathless prayer to St. Eloise, the Patron Saint of Colored Yarn. I’m not really sure if there is a Patron Saint named Eloise, and I definitely don’t know about the colored-yarn thing, but I figured, “What the hell. It can’t hurt.”

More often than not, the contents were a doozy. I would spring to my feet, go over to her chair, hug her tight, and thank her profusely. But those afghans did not match any decors on earth. Especially a three-job-holding-Polly on the East-End-of-Dayton-Decor.

On occasion, a friend would come by, and spy one of the Master Works. They’d say, “Oh my gosh. I love that red, white, blue, and orange afghan. It’s the bomb.” To which I would say, “It is a yours. A gift, just for you. I have an entire closet full in other assorted colors.” They would leave, with the afghan draped around their shoulders, ready to find their next happy, warm nap.

So. There it is. As simple as it is. The things we do affect more people than we know. The door held open. A smile. A glove that’s dropped on the ground, and retrieved. A cup of coffee. A knitted work.

It doesn’t matter when it occurs, or how often, or where. Or even what it is. It only matters that it happens.

Like knitting. One stitch, connecting to another. One right after the next.


On Knitting and Driving:
A policeman spots a woman driving and knitting at the same time.
Driving up beside her, he shouts out the window……
“No,” she shouts back, “a pair of socks!”


“For it is in giving that we receive.”
― St. Francis of Assisi


“Every sunrise is an invitation for us to arise and brighten someone’s day.”
― Richelle E. Goodrich