Wednesday, January 14, 2009

How did I NOT know?

My Mother In Law, Bea, used to Knit and Crochet. Ask me how I found out this vital piece of information that could have smoothed all the rough edges of our early relationship. Go ahead, ask me. Ready? I learned that my MIL used to Knit and Crochet while the ELPH and I were moving Bea from one apartment to another last weekend. I came across one double point needle (DPN) and one crochet hook. I sat there on the floor and said to Bea "I didn’t know you knit.” She said “Oh, yes but it was a long time ago. Oh, I have something for you.” She comes back and hands me this.

11 Crochet Hooks, 3 Afghan Hooks, 12 pairs of Knitting Needles, 4 sets of DPN’s, 2 Circular Needles, a Cable Knitting Needle and the longest darning needle I’ve ever seen. Seriously, it’s like 8 inches long!

32 Needles and Hooks in a 50 year old case that doesn't look a year old. The ELPH doesn't even remember is Mother knitting. And there's no evidence except this case. No knitted hats, sweaters or mittens. No baby blankets. 32 Needles & Hooks people! You don't have that many if you're a casual crafter. She had to have been serious some point.

How am I just learning this? ELPH and I have been married 15 years. I have crocheted numerous items for him and have worked on projects in her presence. How did this subject NOT come up? This would have been such a bonding point for for us. Bea & I haven't always been on best of terms. (Let's just say NO woman would have been good enough for her Only Son and leave it at that.) But over the years we've found some common ground. At the very least knowing that we had this craft in common would've given us something to talk about.

I am so happy to recieve all these needles and hooks. First, because there are Bea's. And second because when I finally learn to knit properly I will already have every needle I will ever need.

Bea is a very lovely woman. Born in Germany in 1924, raised in New York City. She was an elementary school teacher. She skiied and climbed mountains and she still swims half a mile a day. She is very traditional. She comes from a generation that took great pride in doing things just so. When she entertained it was done to the Nines. Tableclothes and napkin rings and the good silver. Juice in juice glasses, water in water goblets, wine in wine glasses, and cordials. They "dressed" for dinner and wore gloves and hats to church. She always tries too hard to make us feel welcome and at home.

It's an era almost gone. And now when ever I use these hooks and needles I'll always remember...That no one ever told me Bea knit!