Sunday, March 13, 2011

Caro's blanket

Grandchildren. One of the greatest joys of life!

Together, my sister, Kittie, and I have seven: Hayden, Cade, Carly, Kynze, Addie Ruth, Levi, and Caroline. That's three for me, four for my sister. As usual, she's out in first place. But I've worked my way through the second-child syndrome. Really, I have.

Anyway, all of these beautiful children were welcomed into the world with a soft, warm, cuddly blanket made with love by their favorite Nana / Great Aunt. Except Sweet Caroline.

I tried. Really, really tried. I just couldn't seem to get her blanket to the end stage.

Until today. Today, I finished nine-month-old Caroline's blanket! 

But why did it take me so long? Why did the lover of all things crafty, Martha Stewarty, home-madey fail to have a blanket for this beautiful child when she born?

Caroline, last Thanksgiving, on a surrogate blanket.

I didn't mean for it to happen. I started the little princess a blanket almost as soon as I found out she would be joining us. I talked to her Mom, found out the style and color she wanted, and quickly dashed out to buy the yarn.

But somewhere along the way, I got delayed.

Maybe it was the back surgery that kicked my, uh, back.

Or, the subsequent surgery to correct complications of the back-kicking back surgery.

Maybe it was the scorching summer that cost me several months. No joke. I can't knit or crochet in the summer. The yarn stings my hands, my hands sweat, and then I get in a really hostile mood. Not from the stinging and sweating, but from the frustration that comes from the damp yarn moving too slowly through my hands.

Then, dang it, once the weather cooled, I realized I had a gaping hole in the middle of the blanket about 40 rows back. That's like 280 rows in dog rows. I'll admit I'm not very observant, but ouch...40 rows back? Ok, maybe there was a glass of wine involved, maybe not. I'm just saying....

So, I had to tink (knit spelled backward) or frog (rip it, rip it, rip it), or whatever you want to call it. The Nancy Drew in me determined that at some point I stopped in the middle of a row, and when I picked up the blanket again, resumed knitting in the wrong direction. If you're a knitter, you know this is very easy to do if you're not paying attention, or if there is a glass of wine involved. That little fiasco set me back about a month. Or so.

Arthritis tried to stop me, too. I won't give that a lot of space here, because that would acknowledge I'm old enough to have arthritis, and I'm not ready to go there.

But, today, after all the stops and starts, Caro has a blanket! A soft, warm, cuddly blanket. A taupe, basketweave blanket. A blanket filled with the love of her great-aunt, sprinkled with dripped coffee and Diet Mt. Dew, and dotted with skipped stitches. And if it had the gestational period of an elephant, hopefully she'll never know.

Because, after all, I did finish it before she learned to count!

Caro's blanket is just like her: a special, one-of-a-kind, gift of love.
Caro's basketweave blanket pattern:

Supplies: approximately 900 yards of worsted weight yarn; size 8 circular knitting needles (or size to obtain gauge)

Gauge: five stitches per inch

Finished size: 31" x 31" or as desired

Cast on 158 stitches.

Knit 10 rows.

Establish pattern:
Row 1: K7, pm, *P4, K4, repeat from * to last 7 seven stitches, pm, K7
Row 2 - 6: K to marker, *P4, K4, repeat from * to marker, K7
Row 7 - 12: K to marker, *K4, P4, repeat from * to marker, K7
Repeat rows 1 - 12 until blanket measures approximately 30 inches, or desired length, and after completing row 6 or 12

Knit 10 rows.

Bind off and weave in ends!

Happy knitting!

1 comment:

  1. It's a beautiful blanket. I'll have to ask Mande to bring it in to work one day!