Tuesday, December 12, 2006

From Sweden, With Love

On a day when the holiday spirit was sorely lacking around Chez Affiknitty, I received this lovely package from Cat. It was loaded with red yarn (Opal sock yarn and the most beautiful wool, enough for a shawl), tea, and even candy for the boys. As you can see, it didn't take J long to get his hands on those candy canes.

But his next words were, "I want the chocolate. I want the whole bag." Yep, that's my boy.

The best part, really, was the nice card and the fact that she thought of my little guys too. This blog is about knitting, and I'll never really want to write at length about intensely personal matters. But I will say that this year has been a little hard for me, for various and sundry reasons. I've not-so-fondly referred to it as "Two Thousand Sucks." But over the last year and a half, the knitblogging community has been very good to me. Cat is one of those special people. You know, it's not the fact that she sent awesome yarn and candy. What makes me so grateful is that I know I have a friend, perhaps very far away in miles, but very close in spirit. It really is the thought that counts. Thanks, Cat.

I know some people frown on these posts, the ones in which bloggers thank other bloggers publicly for gifts. But here's why I'm posting this. I want you all to know how much a small kindness can mean to someone. And also, if you're reading this blog, you undoubtedly have a Cat as well...a friend you've never "met" but who always leaves a cheering comment for you on your blog or on a message board, sends you email, is there for a chat, who will always be excited about your latest FO, or who understands your passion for wool like no one else. I hope this post reminds you of that person and you think of him or her gratefully.

And just because I'm feeling a little sentimental, here's a little holiday music for you. I am extremely picky about holiday music and most of it that you hear on the radio frankly annoys me. (No barking dogs or meowing cats! No Christmas Shoes! No novelty songs in general!) What can I say, I'm a music snob and I'm not ashamed to admit it. But about halfway down this list is my favorite holiday song, "What Are You Doing New Year's Eve," sung by Ella Fitzgerald. If you ask me, that's a song worth enjoying any time of year.

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Blogger JulieFrick said...

I definitely have a couple of Cats (and a couple of cats, as well). This post wasn't just about thanking her, it was about appreciating her. That's a totally different thing. Two Thousand Suck- that's perfect.

8:04 PM  
Blogger Jenn said...

What a great cheery package! And I (personally) think we should shout our thanks from the rooftops - it's not bragging, it's thanking, and frankly, being a little bit in awe of the kindness of strangers (who become friends!).

8:09 PM  
Blogger Jennifer said...

I actually like reading posts where someone gets something from a friend. It reminds me of the goodness and warmheartedness that we humans are capable of.

8:42 PM  
Blogger Laura B said...

What a thoughtful package! I love seeing what a truly tight knit community we all have here!

9:22 PM  
Anonymous mintyfresh said...

With you 100% on 200suck. And as for posting the received gifts: I must say that in general, when people have done a secret pal and display their haul, I'm only marginally interested. But knowing that some of these gifts are just gestures of caring, from people who we only know virtually, is amazing--it's why I definitely wanted to post to the world about the gifts I just recently received. It's true, it means the world to the recipient, and how better to explain that but to share it with the world? No apologies for posting such a lovely, thoughtful gift.

Thinking about you, and sending happy, positive thoughts westward.

11:18 PM  
Anonymous Ellen said...

Laura, I'm so glad your package from Cat lifted your spirits. That's wonderful!

Sorry that your year has been difficult; I hope that 2007 will be SOOOO much better for you.

Anyway, one of the things that I've enjoyed about 2006 is getting to know you a little bit better through your blog and our messages back and forth. You've often been the "Cat" who has made my day with a funny and generous comment or observation.

10:36 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I (for one) like it when people show off care packages. It makes me think how happy I would be if someone did that for me (or if I did that for them) and that makes me happy in itself. I'm glad you have such caring friends who helped you through hard times. I'm glad I have them also, and that I can be one.

10:47 AM  
Blogger Sourire11 said...

Thanks for posting the music link! I'll be listening to that all afternoon in an attempt to get into the holiday spirit - i have to go christmas shopping tonight...

1:03 PM  
Blogger amy said...

What a beautiful post, Laura! Thanks for writing it.

1:05 PM  
Blogger Kate A. said...

I totally second everything everybody said about posts that show off care packages. For one thing, as a recipient I like to be able to do *something* in response for a gift that means so much to me and was given out of pure generosity by a comparative stranger! And to know that such things happen...often!...is one of the few things I get to see on a regular basis that actually restores my faith in humanity.

And is it just me, or is there an extra-special thrill in getting a package from really far away? It's kind of like a time capsule from another world, as well as a care package. Good stuff.

Good to know, too, that your son's got his priorities in order. :-)

My annus horribilus was last year - at christmas time, my entire family was both jobless and having one kind of health crisis or another. I had the scariest health crisis I've had yet, and we had just discovered 22 square feet of mold on our bedroom wall and had to move at the drop of a hat! I mention all this only to say that one year later...I can *almost* laugh at how awful it all was. We're all employed and reasonably healthy again, and Hubbster and I are in a new, much better, and slightly *cheaper* apartment. It WILL get better! It always does.

1:45 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Awww. (Hi, J!) You have definitely been my Cat, and I love you for it.

I know this discussion about gift-posting has come up before, and personally, I'm on your side. I think that it would be great if people would see posts like this and say, let me perform a random act of kindness for someone. You can always buy stuff for yourself, but how many chances do you get to make someone's day?

Bill and I had the same discussion about holiday music today. He's totally with you on that, but he likes "Father Christmas" by the Kinks.


7:18 PM  
Anonymous kris said...

don't you just love knitters? i have made so many great friends through blogging.

here's to 2007 being a great year!

8:41 AM  
Blogger jennie said...

"a friend you've never "met" but who always leaves a cheering comment for you on your blog or on a message board, sends you email, is there for a chat, who will always be excited about your latest FO, or who understands your passion for wool like no one else."
-- you're mine! Thanks for always commenting, always being encouraging, and always being helpful. I hope 2007 brings better things. And more knits!

12:18 PM  
Anonymous Rachel said...

I just went to a Swedish Christmas party last night -- those Swedes do seem to be quality people, don't they?

Great package, great post. Not only does it remind us that most of us have a Cat, but that we should strive to be a Cat to others in our lives.

10:05 AM  
Blogger Glaistig said...

Aww, friends are such treasures and Cat sounds like a true gem. Here's hoping 2007 brings sunnier days for you.

Ella swings, baby! Love her.

3:39 PM  
Anonymous Silke said...

Aaaah, Ella...SIGH. Thanks for that one, I didnĀ“t know it yet :-)

11:58 AM  

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