My mother had arthritic hands. She took up knitting and crocheting as a means of therapy. “It keeps my hand flexible.”
It became a tradition with her to sit in her chair in the living room and knit her latest project. The giving person that she was, her projects became gifts. She crocheted a doll for her first great granddaughter, multiple Afghans and numerous sweaters, hats and scarves for family and friends. Some projects were surprises for under the Christmas tree, each done in love with unique qualities for the receiver. I remember searching the craft store for a person’s favorite colored yarn or her looking through pattern books and saying, “I bet _____ would like this.”
I still wear the hat and scarf she made for me as a Christmas present in 2009. Last month, my younger sister sent me a sweater that won Third Place Prize in the Colorado State Fair. It seems like every time she sent an entry to the Colorado State Fair, she won a ribbon. The room she used as an office had one wall lined with First, Second and Third Place prize ribbons. On the floor below sat some of her creations waiting wrapping for birthdays and Christmas.
By the end of her life, my mother’s hands were gnarled and twisted; yet she continued to make items to give away. As the saying goes, practice makes perfect. Although not perfect, my mother became quite the Artist. My mother generously gave the gift of her art.