Sunday, June 22, 2008

Hot and knitting

I must be nuts. Do you know how hot it's been the past few days in Southern California? I think yesterday the highs hit 111 degrees (43 degrees Celsius) and we are sweltering. It feels very much like a dry sauna or an oven every time we go outside. The coolest ways to stay comfortable is to roam the mall or nap in an air-conditioned room. And what have I been doing? I've been knitting! Ridiculous!

My high school friend Jane, called me the other day from Peru!

"What are you doing in Peru?!"

She and her daughter were with a group who were visiting Peru to help underprivileged children and families in poverty and amongst other things, to pass out sweaters.

Ten or twelve years ago the Guideposts magazine and published a story about a woman who made a sweater and donated it. Over the years thousands and thousands of sweaters have found their ways into the hands of children all over the world who need them.

Jane says to me,

"Tanya, I want to make a sweater but I haven't knitted in 30 years, when I see you next week could you kind'a give me a refresher course?"

This is right up my alley alongside with quilting so I checked out the Guideposts magazine and figured it was an easy enough pattern to explain to someone if necessary. But just to make sure I decided to make a sweater in order to discover the pitfalls myself.

Another trip to Jo Ann's to buy yarn and Wednesday night I started a sweater. I hate to boast, but I really am a fast knitter and the finished product usually turns out nicely. But the heat! I normally limit my knitting to December and January but there I sat with half a sweater on my lap, sweating and knitting away. My mother and Marcy would come in and sit for a couple hours enjoying the air conditioning and both of them looked positively hypnotized watching me knit.

Grandma especially just hovered over me admiring the yarn and saying

"Knitting is so relaxing and a good way to spend extra time. I haven't knitted for years but I bet I could do that too."

"I have another set of knitting needles here. Would you like to start the other half of the sweater for me and brush up on your knitting skills?"

"No thank you."

My sweater got finished up Friday night and yesterday I met Jane and her family for dinner and passed the sweater on to her to pass on to the Guideposts group when she gets hers done. As I say, it is very hot around here and even though Jane's got her yarn on her needles I have a feeling the project is going to get relegated to the closet until late fall rolls around.

Any of you knitters who feel an urge to do some knitting this summer (and those in the southern hemisphere, you've got the seasons on your side for this challenge) please check out the Guideposts website for knitting instructions. Every sweater will make some child happy and it is a good way to use up left over yarn too!


janet said...

I started knitting sweaters for Guideposts this past December. I am not a fast knitter and only knit in the evenings while I watched television. I completed three sweaters and am now motivated to get them mailed to Guideposts. I am not an experienced knitter, but found this project very much within my skill range.

Thank you for sharing, Tanya.


artfilstitch said...

I'm forwaring this information to a good friend who is a master knitter. She owns a knit shop here and is very active in the Knitting Guild. They do lots of charity projects. This is a great cause to give to help.

Mary said...

I must be nuts too because I got the urge to knit the other day too and bought some yarn for a prayer shawl - I don't knit anything that has to fit but I can do a simple shawl.