Once upon a time two fat brown packages plopped onto our doormat. One, addressed to the girls bore the additional comment along one edge “some lovely post from your Great-Aunt” and one, addressed to me was similarly labelled “some lovely post from your Aunt”. The girls tore into theirs and out fell a silicone mold, of the sort that could be for cake or jelly or even perhaps chocolate. It had six dimples shaped like Easter Eggs and once the girls had been persuaded that it was for the real kitchen and not the play kitchen, we put it on the counter to wait for a day to try our hand at chocolate easter eggs.
And my parcel, well my parcel contained these:
Socks, woolly, well loved socks, with a gigantic hole on one foot and the other so threadbare it was a miracle it was holding together.
And with it came a note from my aunt, suggesting that I might like to recycle the socks, the yarn or something about them, and if I couldn’t, or didn’t want to, I could dispatch them to sock heaven. And I laughed as I held them up both because nothing in the world was going to turn those socks back into socks, and because I love to see a hand knit well used.
These were socks that I knit for my Mum. In fact I think they may have been the first socks that I ever knit for Mum, I’m not completely sure, because they pre-date Ravelry, but I remember knitting them for her that first Christmas that I’d learnt to do socks and everyone got a pair because I was completely obsessed and couldn’t imagine knitting anything else and I know that she loved them, not least because I kept getting phone calls about how to wash them.
Dad gave me all of the knits I had made over the years, and because it was a time when I needed to pull my family in close, which in my mind of course means entangling them in yarn so they can’t escape, I gave some of the socks to my sister, and Mum’s sisters, my two lovely aunts had a pair each. And I’m forever grateful that they did, it helped.
But the best sort of socks are the ones that wear out because they’re the ones you reach for everyday and these have certainly been well worn. And anyone that keeps wearing socks until they’re that far gone more than deserves a new pair. So even though the summer is coming, even though I’ve been wearing sandals all week and even though it’s not exactly the perfect sock wearing season, I’ve been knitting. And last week we sent a parcel labelled “some lovely post from your niece and great nieces”
Inside, one brand new pair of soft warm fluffy socks, and a little something extra from the girls, made with very clean hands and a little bit of help from Mummy and then decorated with every sprinkle they could make stick to the chocolateOlds socks, new socks .
I hope she likes them. The yarn is one of my favourites, Sparkleduck Socka and I love the Galaxy colourway, and how it’s knit up into starburst stripes; there’s a bit of a rings of Saturn thing going on, but mostly they’re just wonderfully bright and cheery. The socks themselves aren’t anything fancy, just a standard 64st sock but they should be warm and cosy with all that English summer we still have yet to come. And they were knitted with a lot of love.