Welcome! I'm Cookie's Mom. You can learn all about Cookie and why I blog here: About Cookie's Chronicles. If you're new here, you may want to SUBSCRIBE TO MY RSS FEED. Thanks for stopping by! Pull up a beach chair and be my guest, won't you?

Monday, August 22, 2011

Guest Blogger:
Rach of Life With Baby Donut
"Knitted Together"

My guest today is Rach of Life With Baby Donut. She and I have many things in common. We met our husbands in similar ways (check out Rach's So How'd You Meet Him? story), we share two hobbies (reading and knitting), we each nicknamed our children after dessert items, and we both willingly (mostly) left the comfort of our jobs behind to enter the world of the stay-at-home mom.

Rach is your host for Life's Lessons, a weekly meme that asks, What did you learn this week?

Rach lives in good ole sweltering hot Texas with her husband, Mr. DIH (Does It Himself), and baby Donut. You can learn more about Rach at her blog: About Rach

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Let's get to know Rach better:

Favourite word:
I think it's "Home."  That word is so comforting and it connotes familiarity and nurturing to me.  It's not always a place either.  Sometimes being with a certain person reminds you of home.
Favourite time of day:
Early morning, just before the sun breaks through.  I'm rarely up that early, but whenever I am, I love the peaceful quiet that time of day brings.
Favourite family outing:
I love going to the zoo.  We haven't taken Donut yet, but I hope to in the fall when she's a bit older.
Favourite pastime:
A few hobbies are reading, knitting, blogging and sewing.
Favourite comfort food:
Hot tea.  Not exactly a food, but hot tea always reminds me of my house growing up, where my parents had tea time every afternoon.  Drinking a cup of tea reminds me of family and friends and provides me the chance to just slow down for a bit.
Favourite of my posts:
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Knitted Together
by Rach of Life With Baby Donut

I remember sitting with my grandmother during the cold Minnesota winters, watching her wield her knitting needles.  I was fascinated by the thin metal needles bobbing in her hands as balls of colored yarn were woven together.  She would knit us hats, sweaters and socks every fall to wear in the freezing winter.

She never used a pattern.  She just seemed to know how to coax the yarn into shape effortlessly.  She would knit, hold up the piece she'd made and call me over to measure for size.  I remember feeling her hands on my back and arms as she measured her handwidths against the woven yarn. 

I proudly wore my hand-knit sweaters.  I loved them because I loved my grandmother.  She'd moved in with us when I was in kindergarten and stayed with us for 3 years.  We became best buds.  She'd play the game Memory with me, make me my favorite foods, even let me play with her hair. 

I wanted her to teach me to knit.  She tried, but my little 6 year old fingers were clumsy and impatient.   I just settled for playing with my dolls and Legos instead.

When I was 9, she moved back to her home.  I still remember that day as we watched her board her plane, tears pouring down my face as I held my mother's hand and half-hid behind her so my grandmother wouldn't see me cry. 

Later on at home, we realized that my grandmother hadn't taken everything.  She'd left her knitting needles.  I was determined to learn to knit something, anything, before we went to visit her in a few months.  With my mother's help, I painstakingly knit a small scrap of yarn.  It was probably 2 inches tall and 5 inches wide. 

It was nothing.  But it was everything.

I packed it in my bag when we went to see grandma during my summer break.  When we arrived, I ran excitedly to her and jumped in her arms.  I then rummaged through my bag and triumphantly thrust my offering of yarn to her.  I don't remember what she said, but I knew she was pleased with my effort.

Years passed and my new skill gave way to other hobbies and to growing up.  I became busy with school, friends, driving and boys.  I forgot about knitting for a long time.

A few years ago, a co-worker started bringing her knitting to work.  I remembered my fascination with the craft and decided to pick it up again.  I found a local yarn shop and signed myself up for a private lesson.  It was just as magical and beautiful as I'd remembered all those years ago.  I learned quickly and only needed that one lesson.  I started knitting like crazy, making scarves and baby blankets. 

Knitting is soothing.  I love being able to take a skein of yarn, thread it around a piece of metal, and make something beautiful out of it.  And every time I pick up those needles, I'm reminded of the love shared between my grandmother and me.  These needles, knits and purls, will always be our special bond.

My grandmother passed away earlier this year, just a few weeks after Donut was born.  I haven't knitted since, being busy with Donut, but also finding it painful to pick up a needle.  I miss my grandmother every day.  But one of these days, I'll get back into it again.  And when I do, I'll know I'm not only knitting yarn, but sweet memories across the generations. 


  1. Thank for having me here today. I love that we both enjoy knitting and hopefully we can get some of our bloggy friends to get involved too!

  2. Rach, thanks so much for being my guest! Thank-you for sharing this story of how knitting connects you to your grandmother. My grandma was the one who taught me how to knit as well.

    I think we can definitely inspire each other to keep up the craft!

  3. Aw..what a lovely story. I love how knitting is so much a part of the memory of your Grandma. I never tried knitting and I don't think I'll have the patience to knit either. But it is a wonderful craft.

  4. Heartwarming post, Rach. My grandmother taught me how to sew and embroider.

  5. I've always wanted to learn how to do this...so far I've gone as far as picking up two chopsticks and just going through the motions...maybe someday I'll get to it. Hopefully before I have grandchildren, coz' all grandmas should know how to knit =) (and bake!)

  6. I loved this story. I knit too, but only in a rectangle. I have a lot of scarves. My grandmother tried to teach me, but we didn't have a great relationship. The funny thing is, now I'm the only granddaughter that has ANY interest in this at all.

  7. This is so sweet! My grandmother is always crocheting and sewing. She tried to teach me when I was younger...I did learn to cross stitch, but I really want to learn how to use a sewing machine so I can do curtains and such. I'm so glad you have this wonderful memory of her and that you can carry on the tradition!

  8. @Germaine: It's really quite addicting once you get the hang of it. But I know it's not for everyone!

    @Janie: I'm so glad she taught you those things.

    @Rachel Joy: You'll get the hang of it. You should take lessons or watch You Tube!

    @Sara: I have a lot of scarves too. And I don't usually wear them b/c it doesn't get too cold down here!

    @Natalie: You should get your grandmother to teach you to sew. That's another fun hobby of mine too!

  9. What a heart-warming, amazing story, full of precious memories. Thank you so much for sharing this! From one knitter to another, God Bless!

  10. I loved your story. I attempted knitting before, but gave it up quickly. I may try it again someday. I bet you'll be happy when you start again.

  11. Great post Rachel. It is nice to have something so tangible to remind you of your sweet grandma.

  12. This is by far my favorite post of yours Rach. It is so beautifully written. I love it.

  13. @Jeanette: Thank you!

    @Grumpy Grateful Mom: I hope I can start up again when it's a cooler. Kinda hard to knit in 108 degree weather!

    @Theresa: Thank you. It is nice to have that connection.

    @Ali: That means a lot to me. Truly.

  14. Such a beautiful post, Rach. I know what you mean about having that connection. So sorry you've lost your Grandma, but how nice that you have something to connect her to you.

  15. Aww, Rach...this was such a beautiful post! Very sweet and touching. And so sorry about your grandmother.

  16. I can relate to your Post I have that connection with my 85 yr old Grandmother. Sorry for your loss.

    Newest GFC follower from vB Hopper Mania. I hope you have a great week!

  17. This is beautiful Rach. What a sweet memory.
    I hope you find time to pick them up again and possibly mend your hurt.

  18. It's so wonderful that she passed down this love of knitting before she passed on, because you'll always, always have it.

    Is it very difficult to do? I bet it's neat to create something from just lines of string.

  19. My only girlfriend in my part of Los Angeles keeps encouraging me to learn knitting. I love watching her create things as we talk, whereas I am doing nothing more than creating than the word combinations I'm always busy creating.

    Watching her reminds me how much I loved making cheap crafts when I was in Japan. I loved painting, making CD covers, making postcards, looking up new crafts to do with my students. Then I came back to the U.S. and found myself not creating anything (excepting the caveat above) anymore. I miss that so much. It didn't matter if the end result was beautiful, in my case--just that I lost myself in the project!

    This was such a tender, sweet read. And what a beautiful concluding thought! It will be magic, when you're ready.

  20. This reminds me of my aunt and quilting. She taught me to quilt before she passed away and I it (when I can find time).

  21. Such a beautiful post, I have always wanted to learn to knit, I can crochet but no knitting. I also have tender memories wrapped up in crocheting and have not done it for years for that same reason. I hope you can pick up your needles again and knit through your memories, remembering your grandmother with fondness.

  22. So sorry for your loss Rach. I'm glad she left you a lovely legacy, something you can do to remember her by. Knitting is such a wonderful thing, making something for someone you love with your own hands, what could be more special?

  23. I love you Rach...
    I wished that I learned how to knit and sew from my grandma before she had passed. It would have been a lovely gift that I could have passed down to my kids and grandkids.
    Things she taught me?
    How to laugh and to enjoy the simple things...oh and to never EVER leave the house without having your hair did and make-up on.
    Love this story. I hope that one day you'll be able to start knitting again.

  24. What a beautiful tribute to your grandmother. You had me in tears reading this. Beautiful.

  25. My grandmother has knitted blankets for all three of my boys. They just love them. It is something special from her that we will always have with us.

    I love your story!!

  26. Lovely memories...really enjoyed reading this! Reminds me of my grandma teaching me to crochet when I was about 6. I was into it for many years...think I even made a sweater vest! I so wish I had the time to pick up the needle again.