Make 100 Lovelies: #1 Chunky Cowl

My mom can make anything.

In part, I think her willingness to try to make stuff came from the fact that raising kids is expensive and she had three kids.

Growing up, she learned how to sew from the lady across the street. When my mom had kids, she didn’t shy from teaching herself quilting, knitting, dressmaking, cross-stitch, embroidery. Her attitude has always been that she could make something that was twice the quality for half the price.

Her approach has always been, “You don’t know how? Well, boo hoo for you! Can you read?” Literally. In third grade, When I was nervous about cooking for the first time, she said, “You can read, can’t you?”

That attitude- that if I was willing to learn, I could do just about anything I wanted to has permeated my life. Of course things are different now than when I was a kid. Now, Google and YouTube can teach anyone how to poach eggs, knit, or juggle.

So, at Christmas, I bought some chunky yarn to make a new cowl. With chunky yarn, it knitted up pretty fast. The pic below is my mom’s hands working to finish it. 

It really is something- to think about those hands and what they’ve done. I remember the feel of those hands, twisting my hair into a high and tight French braid for the first day of third grade. Those hands working the delicate orange-gold satin of my senior prom dress. Those hands working quickly and deftly at pressing homemade pizza crust into a round pan.

A lot of parents pass on terrible things to their  children; mental illness, physical disease, poor habits.  I am really glad that my mom passed her willingness and ability to learn how to do stuff, but more I am happy that I got her fearlessness about it.  Like, what is the worst that can happen if a project fails?  You’ve wasted time and maybe materials.  Big deal.

What did your mom pass onto you?