Here we are, at this day of the year that I love so much. Solstice. I've written at length before about it, (here and here) The longest night, the shortest day.
I got up last night at 3am and went outside in to the backyard to look up at the moon. Fully eclipsed on the solstice night. Something that hasn't happened since the 1600's and won't happen again for about 400 more years. It was odd, and lovely and I stood there in my boots and bathrobe, staring up the moon in the dark. Then I took a breath of the solstice night air, turned to come in and smiled. My neighbour was out there too. Standing in his snow boots and pajamas, staring up at the moon.
From now on (very slowly) the light comes back. No more dark breakfasts and dinners, no more travelling to and from work or school without the sun. It's a very, very hopeful thing for a northern people, and in that spirit (hopefulness) I've had Natalie working hard on the Knitters Without Borders inbox. You may have noticed the number in the sidebar creeping ever upwards - and I know that looks like slow progress and it seems like we're horrible slackers for being so slow with it, but I just want you to imagine for a minute what that inbox is like. Even if the average donation was $50 - to get to $50 000 (and we have way more than that) it's a thousand emails. Imagine now that a lot of those emails are actually for $5 - and think about how long it might take to get through it. It's not a problem, and we're tremendously happily unbelievably happy for a donation of a single dollar - but it takes a while to do the mail. (I actually love the $5 donations. I feel like they're really heartfelt. If what you can spare is $5, that means that you don't have a lot of cash to throw around, and that you would give a donation at all when money is that significant and scarce? Does a heart good. It really does.) The other thing that I love? That you're all so committed to sending those emails and keeping the cash coming, that I needed to hire an assistant to work on it one morning a week. It's a good sign of decency in the world. That delightful assistant, Natalie, has organized a giveaway for today, a little round of Karmic balancing gifts. People offer a gift, Nat (or I) use a random number generator to choose who - from the mighty spreadsheet of everyone who ever donated- gets one, and then we marry up the giver and giftee. To celebrate the solstice, here's the first round - there will be more. I've emailed the lucky knitters to let them know they've won. If you think it's you, check your inbox.
Brittany from Knit Witch has offered a beautiful yarn bowl.
It's going to live with Nance H.
Andey Layne has generously donated a skein of yarn, the winners choice of a fingering or lace weight from her site.
Vicky will have the fun of picking.
Our delightful Mistress of the Stash Weasels, McKenna, has offered a darling woollen weasel (this one is mine.)
Going to guard the stash of Melinda N. (McKenna does commissions for weasels, if you need one of your own.)
Kathleen has donated a pattern for her fabulous KWB/TSF hat,
Andrea will be downloading it. (All proceeds from that pattern go to KWB. It's pretty cool)
Not to be outdone, Pauline is offering a full set of twelve patterns from her site,
and the lucky Lana G will be enjoying them.
Finally, last but not least, the big hearted Amy L. offered a skein of Daniel (from The Yarn Stash)
and it is switching allegiances and going to be enjoyed by Stellaluna.
And with that.. I wish you a happy, happy Solstice. Remember, my friends no matter how dark it is now, Solstice means the light is coming.