Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Knit Out!

I apologize for posting this so late. It was written last night, and I generally post before I hustle off to the Courage Center pool for water aerobics. I haven't been going lately because I have this "cold thing." It's like a bad cold except it won't go away. I decided that I really have to get back into the real outside world so I went this morning, but forgot to post this before I left.

This past weekend the Mall of America had its second annual Knit Out & Crochet, sponsored by Craft Yarn Council of America, which I had never heard of before. Literally tens of thousands of women turned out for this. The parking ramps were packed full, the corridors of the mall were mobbed. Booths were set up, mostly by manufacturers who were giving product, magazines and patterns away. Lion Yarn was giving away the most enormous black canvas tote I have ever seen. It was about a yard high, it’s in my office right now, taking up valuable space. I had heard the people running this event had free knit and crochet lessons – and they did, even better than I thought: it was virtually one-on-one. I already know how to knit, at least the basics, so I sat down on a folding chair and was taught how to single and double crochet by a patient and enthusiastic young woman. I walked away with a page of instructions – and a skein of yarn and a crochet hook!

They also had panel discussions and even a world’s fastest kniter competition. I could possibly win a competition for world’s slowest.

There are more charities centered on knit and crochet than you possibly think. I paid eighteen dollars for a kit of three yarns, a pair of knitting needles, and a pattern. I’m supposed to knit a teddy bear (the pattern is dead simple), and send it to a local woman who ships the bears to sub-Saharan Africa to be distributed to AIDS orphans. If you save the red yarn the kit is closed with, you can stitch a heart on the bear to let the recipient know someone, somewhere, seriously cares about him or her. I’ve only got one leg finished and the second about two-thirds done, but what I’m doing is working it like a prayer shawl, thinking prayerfully of the child who will one day hold the little bear, wishing him or her well, hoping he or she has a long and happy life.

I invite you to visit the Craft Yarn Council’s web site;

On Friday we are flying to Mexico City. We have a very good friend down there who speaks excellent English – which is a good thing, as we speak virtually no Spanish. We will start for home on the 27th after a very busy visit. There is a lot to see and do in the capitol, and we’re going to take a big bite of that city. There is a big Aztec temple complex very nearby, there is the historic downtown, the world-famous Museum of Anthropology, fabulous restaurants, and lots of shopping. My friend’s husband plays flamenco guitar (when he’s not being a banker), and she has two very fine children, one of whom will celebrate a birthday while we’re there. The weather is in the mid-seventies and usually sunny. I think we’re going to have a great time.


Marlyn said...

The Knit Out sounds like so much fun. I wish there was one on the West Coast.

Monica Ferris said...

I can't imagine that this is the only event of this nature in the whole country. I'd do some research except I'm tired and I'm drinking a delicious fuzzy navel and so am in no condition to surf the 'Net!