Prosper the Work of Our Hands

downsized_0119151140aI just fin­ished the afghan at right, a gift to my son’s future in-laws. It was sup­posed to be a Christ­mas present. But I was so way­laid by the flu, so achy, I could hard­ly work on it. I start­ed it the week before Christ­mas and final­ly hob­bled to the fin­ish line with it on Jan­u­ary 19th. Well, it’s final­ly done, done well and it’s pret­ty, I think.…but late.

The afghan has a Father Michael con­nec­tion- that’s why it’s on this blog! Last year I made the same pat­tern for Father M in an ombre mix of autumn col­ors-though it was main­ly green. It took me three days tops to com­plete the blan­ket then.

I was in the habit of get­ting Father Michael small gifts and even non­sense things to cheer him up as he bat­tled his mal­a­dy. One day he was going on and on about some­thing real­ly appeal­ing to his ‘fem­i­nine side’, say­ing he need­ed to pay more atten­tion to ‘her’. I know very lit­tle about the anima/animus psy­chol­o­gy busi­ness. But to hear Father Michael elab­o­rate on it was hysterical.…and inspir­ing! I decid­ed to put togeth­er a ‘care pack­age’ for his neglect­ed ani­ma , whom I called ‘Michelle’ (real orig­i­nal, I know). Well Father Michael absolute­ly loved it. It was main­ly groom­ing items,unisex, but there were a few things like the mini sewing kit, the facial, the mir­ror and the lace doilies that screamed “I am woman”. I did won­der what Father did with that stuff. Lat­er he told me that the broth­ers kept a col­lec­tion of things that they gave as presents to St Pius staff;perhaps that’s where it went. Buuuut,sometime after­ward Father Michael did men­tion the love­ly scent­ed can­dles I’d includ­ed and declared “You know I wouldn’t mind some more of those cute lit­tle can­dles, I like to light them for when I have my bath”. Hard to keep a straight face with that holy man some­times!

Anyway,one day I vis­it­ed Father Michael at St Pius and saw that he had two or three woven throws in his liv­ing area. But there was noth­ing home­made that I could see. I decid­ed that I want­ed to make him a blan­ket. It was grat­i­fy­ing to buy him the instant tick­ets, the food and the flow­ers, but it wasn’t per­son­al. Yet, I knew that Father M just had tons of things in that place-per­haps he had many afghans, but all put away .  I went ahead and cro­cheted the afghan and enclosed a note with it.  I told Father Michael I want­ed to give him some­thing I’d made myself, cel­e­brat­ing our friend­ship. But I explained he was free to give it away if he want­ed. When he respond­ed, Father M said the “blan­ket is love­ly” and that he would trea­sure it. He told me that he kept it on his bed. So it was a worth­while effort and I’ll always know Father made use of my gift.

Inter­est­ing­ly, the blue blan­ket has anoth­er con­nec­tion. I’d used the same beau­ti­ful blue yarn to make anoth­er small gift. Father had been com­plain­ing about how his hands would get cold when he was in bed,  using his ipad. I decid­ed to make him fin­ger­less gloves, hop­ing they would help. Went to the store, checked out the black and the white yarns and some grey tweed ‚too. I thought ‘they must get tired of black and white’. I almost chose red,but set­tled on the blue. Took me an hour to knit the things, very sim­ple. I brought them to Father that after­noon. He wasn’t exact­ly thrilled, but insist­ed on try­ing them on. Still wasn’t too thrilled. So I said ” Well, I can tell they’re not your cup of tea, but maybe one of ‘the boys’ could use them?  I ‘m sure some of them get cold hands.” Father Michael took off the gloves , fold­ed them and then said vehe­ment­ly “Nope- they get NOTHING!”  I fig­ured ‘the boys’ must have been mis­be­hav­ing to elic­it that reac­tion out of Father M. I won­der if he ever used those things??? Such poignant memories.Glad for them.

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On anoth­er note, here is a pic­ture of my beau­ti­ful Christ­mas tree. I am embar­rassed to say it is still up on Jan­u­ary 21. It still smells won­der­ful; it is a Fras­er fir. It’s a bit droopy now, but still hold­ing  most of its nee­dles. I guess one could say we cel­e­brate the 12 PLUS Days of Christ­mas! I think my flu delayed every­thing, so I am hav­ing the Christ­mas sea­son now.

It’s always hard to take the Christ­mas stuff down,but the tree will go out in the yard , where I will still enjoy it and the birds will use it for shel­ter. And in the spring , my hus­band will chop it up for mulch for the gar­den. It will smell good even then. Just couldn’t resist shar­ing the pic­ture.

 

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