The year is drawing to a close, and I can’t believe that this was only one year. It felt like two or three, all squished together, to the point that last winter seems like a really far time away. The Winter Olympics in Vancouver? Surely that was 2008! The BP oil spill – wasn’t that under President Bush (ok, he bears some of the responsibility, but he wasn’t President when it happened).
I feel like this was the year of a marathon, or maybe a season of Survivor, and while I didn’t win a million dollars, I did get something way, way more important – I got to take care of my Mom when she needed it most. After all the decades of a difficult relationship, my Mom and I finally have made peace, and we enjoy each other’s company. It wasn’t always so, and I know I had my own part in those difficulties. Not knowing how many years lie ahead, I’m treasuring the moments and breathing through the challenges of taking care of an elder.
And one of the things that I had been dreading the most, clearing out the family home, is done. Sure, there’s a storage unit that still needs to be gone through, but with the help of friends and family, a big, big thing got done, and reasonably well. That’s my biggest FO of 2010!
Yesterday, a friend who is also currently a member of the taking-care-of-Mom tribe left a mysterious message on my answering machine while I was gone, something to the effect of “I’m bringing you a gift that you need but don’t know that you do.” She appeared on my doorstep, and when I opened the gift, this was the item:
It’s a plastic bag holder, hand-crafted by my friend who took care of my kitties all those weeks while I was down taking care of Mom. She’d seen the pile of newspaper bags by the kitty litter box. She says I “inspired” her to make a whole slew of them for other kitty and dog owners. It’s the best surprise gift – something you do need and hand-picked and sewn especially for you!
There are some final FOs of the knitting nature to also report:
The striped sweater ala Ellizabeth Zimmermann’s percentage system with the leftovers of the steeked vest, and a couple of mittens so far with the scraps: