Starting when I was in the second grade, I had a standing date every Monday afternoon. My mom would pick up a car full of my girlfriends and take us over to her friend Kim's house. Kim taught my friends and I how to knit and crochet, for the bargain price of $2.00 per girl, per lesson.
Although Kim lived in a 70's era ranch home with her young family, her living room was reminiscent of a Victorian parlor. We all sat around an ornate wooden coffee table, on a mauve damask sofa or in a powder blue chair, and Kim taught us the art of looping yarn around needles.
We began with crochet, making potholders in each new stitch we learned. Eventually we graduated to an actual project and learned to read patterns.
One of my first projects was this little stuffed lamb. Amazingly, I found this same pattern at a thrift store a few months back. Perhaps another stuffed lamb is in our future.
After we mastered crocheting, or at least grew tired of it, we moved on to knitting. I made several sweaters, including this one for my Cabbage Patch doll.
I just love those little bunny buttons.
Thanks to Kim for the lessons, and thanks to my mom who drove me over to Kim's, paid for my lessons, bought me yarn and needles and helped me work on my projects at home, my Monday afternoons haven't changed much in 25 years.
Rather than a junior Stitch-n-Bitch in a mock Victorian parlor, I now knit quietly by myself, standing at my dining room table, putting down my work every so many stitches to tie a water balloon for my son, or answer phone calls from my daughter's friends. Of course another distinct difference is that I now have to pay for my own yarn and needles - it's a shame Addi Turbos are so much more enjoyable to work with and sooo much more expensive than the good old Susan Bate's needles I grew up with. But oh the peace of mind I derive from knitting and crocheting, and the joy of finishing a project is priceless. And all this, thanks to the women in my life who saw fit to pass on an ancient craft to a new generation.