Ashley and I had the pleasure of meeting Kay last year when she came to the shop. She is a published lace knitter and a really wonderful person.
The Traveling Shawl is making it's way across the United States, 7 rows at a time. One person from 50 states is knitting their part to help raise funds for the Susan G Komen Foundation. This started in October of 2008 and ends in October 2009 or when the shawl is finished. There have been really neat articles published in local papers along the way.
The shawl has a blog, where the knitters post the person they are honoring while they knit their rows and the feelings it may evoke. The blog posts can be very moving. It really makes you stop and think when you see how many people are affected by this horrible disease and how many peoples lives are touched and impacted.
When I got the package with the shawl, there was a big to-do around here. I had been talking about it for about a week, because I knew it was coming. The children just love mail time around here (kind of like Christmas every day, lol) and they brought the package to the shop. I opened it and took out the shawl and everybody around oohed and ahhhed.
When I had the time to knit on it the next day, the children all saw me doing it and taking great pains to make sure no one interrupted Marmee....(read that k1,2,3....just a minute, Marmee is busy, I will talk to you at the end of this row, LOL). Just in case you don't know, I have 6 of my 8 children living with me and sometimes we even have 2 or 3 trying to get my attention at the same time, hard to believe I know... ;) Anyway, when I devote that much concentration to something, the kids want to know why, so I began to explain what I was knitting on and why.
I immediately knew who I wanted to honor when Kay asked me to knit. I have a very dear friend, Patricia, that lost her sister to breast cancer, and I saw how she and her mother, Sue, handled that loss. I love them both so much and they faced it so bravely. I knew I wanted them to know that I had noticed and had not forgotten. The other person I wanted to recognize is a breast cancer survivor, Judy. This woman is the spunkiest, most courageous person I know. As many of you know, when you face the life altering circumstances of this horrible disease, you also have to face the fact that others lives around you are going to alter. Judy has demonstrated to me that you can take what life deals you and your immediate world with a smile on your face. These people are my heroes and I wanted to honor them.
The children wanted to honor them too, so they all wanted to knit one stitch on the shawl. Kay graciously gave us permission! Greg joined in too and knit one stitch. He hadn't knit since he was a kid, but he remembered how! Then came the request to give their savings to the foundation, as the shawl has a $5 suggested donation (which you can do through this link). If you are asked to enter a first and last name of the team you are supporting enter, Traveling (first name) and Shawl (last name). Every donation is entered in a raffle to win the completed shawl. I was so happy to watch them be as moved as I was by this shawl being a part of our lives for a couple of days.
My extended “Enchanted family” was also impacted. People came in asking to see it and some people just wanted to touch it. As people saw the shawl, the stories began to flow as to how their lives were impacted by breast cancer, either by someone they had lost or someone they knew who was a survivor. I will never forget the opportunity that was given to me to do this. I really appreciated being given the chance to use my love for fiber arts in a way that could help someone else and in turn help me so very greatly.
Thank you Kay Meadors and all the people on Ravelry that helped to organize this awesome project.
From Kentucky, the shawl travels to Ohio. The Traveling shaw has a Facebook group, a Ravelry group and a blog all it's own. Keep up with it and if funds allow, make a contribution to end this horrible disease!
I have pictures to upload, but Blogger is giving me fits...I will put the pics in the next post :)