Thanks Nan

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My Nan in front of what would soon be Darn Knit Anyway!

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My Grandmother “Nanny Jean” taught me how to knit.

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She lived in the Walker area of Minnesota and we would visit her on summer weekends and holidays.  We would always knit or crochet or sew when I was with her.  My mom wasn’t really crafty at the time, so my knitting time was very limited to when I was with my Nan.  As I got older, and my family got busier, we visited her less and less.  Sad really.  But my crafting also got to be less and less.

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I graduated from high school and went to college in Madison, Wisconsin (yep, I’m a proud Badger).  Anyway, I rarely saw my Nan while I was away at college except summer time and holidays and they really weren’t prime knitting times.

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After graduating from college, I certainly wasn’t going to devote prime partying time to what I thought was the old lady craft of knitting.   I was in the midst of my first real job, first real apartment in Uptown, first real freedom!  My Nan kept trying though, she lived back in the Twin Cities by then and I saw her very regularly.  She would be sitting on the front stoop of her little cottage knitting away and I would come for a visit…usually for a great big bowl of yummy soup and cheese sandwich or a pot roast.  She would try to get me to pick up the needles every time.  It wasn’t to be.  I was moving too fast.

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My Nan was the Christmas stocking knitter of the family.  Each new member got their very own Christmas stocking.  These weren’t just any Christmas stockings…they had names knit into them and each one was a different pattern.  Santa popping out of the chimney, reindeer, snowmen, presents, christmas trees…you get the idea.  So, these stockings had come to be a tradition.  She had been knitting them her whole life for new spouses and babies.  Even a few boyfriends over the years were lucky enough to snag a Nanny Stocking.

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One day Nan and I were hanging out at her place.  I had gotten married that year and my daughter Maggie had just been born.  Nanny, as usual, was still trying to get me to get back into knitting.  She said “Aimee, who’s going to knit the Christmas stockings when I am dead”.  WHAT?!!  Well, that’s all it took.  Catholic guilt kicked in and  I sat right down and knit with her.  Honestly, I think the lack of sleep (Maggie was a tough baby) and the fact that my Nan would pay attention to Maggie while I knit encouraged me.   I found I loved to knit.  Most of all, I  loved that my Nan loved that I knit.

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By the way, my Nan is still alive.  She totally conned me into knitting with that Christmas stocking sob story.   I love her even more for that:)

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Thanks Nan

2 Responses to “Thanks Nan”

  1. Kevin Dole says:

    How blest we are to have her.

  2. Becky Stoen says:

    I work at the place that your Nan now resides. I cannot tell you how much joy she has brought to everyone there! She speaks of you and your shop often. She is so proud! What a wonderful woman!

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