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Go Forth in Warmth
By: Michelle Edwards
 
"One can never have enough socks," said Dumbledore. "Another Christmas has come and gone and I didn't get a single pair. People insist on giving me books."

Amigurumi Graduation OwlAll over the country, they are promenading across the stage. Some may have taken the walk already. After a short stop for a handshake, an occasional hug, and the receipt of that slender, but valuable roll of paper, they will exit as quickly as they entered. And then their moment is over.

The 2010 graduates.

Maybe you have watched one grow up. From strollers to trikes to cars that sometimes move faster than you like, they seem to have arrived at this day in a flash. This year I'm a parent of two. My oldest daughter, Meera, just graduated from the university, and by the time this essay appears, my youngest daughter, Lelia, will have finished her high school days.

Since Lelia still lives at home, we know so many of her friends, and their parents, too. Our last few weeks have been a whirl of senior class activities, concerts, and honor ceremonies. Each of these events brings us closer and closer to the final one, allowing us to share a fleeting closeness with her, and her classmates.

Some of these soon-to-be graduates have slept countless nights on our family room floor, their giggling and antics keeping us all awake. They have joined us for meals, baked cookies in our kitchen, arrived for before prom make-up sessions, studied physics and chemistry at our dining room table, and delivered homework on days when Lelia was sick. Moving on to schools near and far, they will be missed. And because I know that with this next step, they will face new, exciting, and possibly scary challenges, I wanted to give them a handmade graduation gift. A little something to make the coming voyage just a teeny bit warmer.

Occasionally over the years, graduation has found me knitting a gift, or two. Sometimes a shawl, or an afghan, but this year with such a long list, I needed to rethink what I might make. What would they like? What would they use?

A few gifts were really easy; the friend who always borrows Lelia's hat, is getting a hat. The one who gave her seal of approval to a pair of wristers recently is getting her own pair. Another will receive an afghan, a stalled one that seemed to be waiting for a moment like this to be completed. Most will receive socks. Thick and warm. More like slippers. Knit at 3 stitches to the inch in assortment of bulky yarns and colors, they are made in snap. Not a fashion statement, but a solid, dependable friend for cold feet in chilly dorm rooms.

Knitting in the early morning, and late evening as graduation day draws closer, my pile of gifts has grown. Every one of them offers its own kind of protection from the elements.

There's still a hot summer ahead of us. Eventually though, it will blend into a cool autumn. Leaves will change color, frost will decorate the windows, and then, very possibly, the 2010 graduates may remember the lumpy gift they received back when they were still in their cozy cocoon, too busy to think much of them. Then they might just slip their wooly handmade gift on. And when they do, I hope that the present I knit them delivers some comfort.

Congratulations to the class of 2010! Go forth in warmth!

There's still time for knitting graduation gifts. That is, if you use a bulky yarn, or two strands of a worsted, and make a small project, like a pair of socks or a hat. Try our Cozy Slipper Socks or Starboard Socks patterns for fast-finish gradation gifts. Click here for the Amigurumi Graduation Owl pattern pictured above.



Authored by Michelle Edwards

Michelle Edwards is the author of A KNITTER'S HOME COMPANION. She has also written and illustrated many award winning children's books. In her spare time, Michelle enjoys talking about books in schools throughout the US and beyond. Her newest book, Room for the Baby, will be available from Random House in Fall 2012. Visit Michelle Edwards at her website or on Facebook.
 
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