Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Bear Hugs

Make a bear. Make a difference
Here are my first three bears I made for a wonderful charity.  It is called Mother Bear Project and was founded by the mother of one of the fraternity members here at my new home. He saw me working on a project and asked if I could knit.  He very casually mentioned that his mom makes teddy bears. This organization has sent over 121,000 handmade bears to children in the past few years.
From the website: "The Mother Bear Project is dedicated to providing comfort and hope to children affected by HIV/AIDS in emerging nations, by giving them a gift of love in the form of a hand-knit or crocheted bear."
It began when Amy read an article and was so moved by it, she wanted to do something to help. Her mother had made knitted teddy bears for her grandchildren from a vintage pattern, so Amy learned to knit, taught her friends to knit, and Mother Bear was born.
All bears must be made from the same basic pattern, but it is amazing how different they are. The pattern is very easy. I am not much of a knitter, and had to watch a few you-tube videos to learn how to pick up stitches for the arms, but the results are great. And anyone's heart will melt when you see photos of the children with their new bears.
I am almost finished with #4. Then I will send my first bears in with money for postage. Hearts will be sewn on each of them and tags included with the maker's name. I plan to finish many more.
When I first heard of this project, it struck my heart. And then I realized that I had read a book a few years ago called "Knitting for Peace" which tells all about it. So, I guess this was one of those projects "meant to be".

Saturday, April 02, 2016

Sticks and Strings and Other Things

There was a time in my life when there was never enough time. Isn't it strange that we can be so busy that we dream of a few moments of solitude, but when it arrives, we don't quite know what to do with it, do we? I grew up in a large family, and then was the proud mama of five, so I have always known a little bit about noise, and the difficulties of finding a quiet time and the space to be alone. And, then, suddenly, there were months and then years when I was alone, and everything in my life became reduced to doing the necessary things, and then staring out of a window or losing myself in a book for hours every day.
And then suddenly one day, I took a giant step and moved myself into a little space in a big house. There is a lot of noise, and activity, and laughter, and wrestling matches, and arguments about whether a hot dog is a sandwich.... And I am hearing certain words and phrases more times in one day than I have ever heard them in my life. My job here is to be nearly invisible and in the background, which is understandable. How many young men want to live with an old (who, Me?) woman?   None, of course. And I totally get that. But, yes, they are friendly to me, and polite, and respectful. And most of them talk to me a lot. And I am laughing again. I have the feeling that Jim and Rich are laughing too.

This began as a post about all the things I have been making with my free time. That is the Sticks and Strings part. I really miss having a crafting room, because, at one time, I had the best of the best. But knitting and crocheting don't have to take a lot of room, so I have been busy in my little space. First, I made a large afghan, as a Christmas gift.

Next, some smaller projects. I needed a bag to hold my yarn.

And then, a smaller bag.....

I couldn't resist this granny tea cosy:

And a decorated vase:

I saved my best for last, and now my picture won't come up. So I'll be back.........