Friday morning I did my level best to convince myself it didn't matter if the blanket yarn arrived or not. Friday afternoon I was having a harder time, and when the post didn't arrive and I had to reconcile myself to the situation, I was pretty upset. I know that the idea of a baby getting their blanket a few days late seems like a no brainer to a lot of you, but it didn't seem to me like it was going to be a few days. The soonest the yarn could arrive was today, and I'm leaving tomorrow (Rhinebeck Ho!) and there wouldn't be time to both knit it and block it before I left and that would mean that for the new plan to work, the baby had to be ten days late. I was upset, but I was trying to be okay with it. I'm adult that way.
All that exploded when I heard that Robyn's labour had started. Any peace I had found with it, any acceptance that I felt in my heart evaporated in an instant. I snapped. I decided that somewhere close to me there had to be one ball of that yarn, and I started looking. I tweeted. You guys retweeted. I blogged, I went on Ravelry, I followed up leads and stuck with it until finally I got a tweet near midnight from a knitter named Martha who had a skein of the yarn I needed -
@MJPomilio 11 Oct
@YarnHarlot I can get a skein to you at the Toronto/Buffalo border crossing in 4 hours. Dead serious!
and suddenly Operation Swift Blanket was underway. "Joe" I said, "We're going to Buffalo." We all had a sleep, and bright and early the next morning, we were on the road. Joe and I drove like thunder, thinking the whole time that we couldn't believe that someone was willing to do this for us. (Let us pause for a minute and also notice that Joe was willing to do this. When I thanked him, he just said "It's for my niece or nephew too.") All the way to Fort Erie, we talked about how amazing Martha was, and how it was going to be her that made it possible for the new baby to have a blanket on their birthday. (It was rather clear by now that Saturday would be the baby's birthday.) Knitters, meet Martha.
Hours after "meeting" on Twitter, we were in one of the world's dodgiest Chinese restaurants, buying Martha lunch, throwing presents at her, and none of it was enough. See, by the time we got to the border, we knew something wonderful. Our niece had arrived.
The race was on to have a blanket finished by the time we were able to meet her. Lucky for me, Martha is so smart and kind that she wound the yarn before she brought it, and I was able to join it in the restaurant, and knit all the way home.
Funny thing about that yarn, just a crazy thing. Martha had just ordered it. It had arrived at her house the day before, and she had only ordered one skein - and she couldn't explain why. She had no plan for it, it wasn't enough to do anything with... it had just found her way into her cart on Monday, and shipped to her house just in time for her to see my tweet. More than that? Martha doesn't do twitter much. She's got no explanation for what possessed her to order a skein of white yarn she didn't need, and then hop onto twitter.
Me? I've got a pretty good idea that it was her knitter instincts taking over. Somewhere, somehow, the need for the yarn was so big and so mighty, that Martha heard the call, and responded the way that only a knitter can. It was a yarn miracle.
I wasn't able to finish the blanket on the drive home (turns out I might have underestimated the amount of work left by a few hours) but I kept knitting when I got here, and by 8pm it was blocking on our bed upstairs.
(Forgive the crappy picture. It was dark.)
By midnight it wasn't yet dry, so Joe and I found other beds, and the next morning when it was finished, it was glorious.
Baby blanket, my own pattern, one of a kind. (9 skeins of Loopy Ewe solid series, in white.) This blanket has pines, for the camping and out of doors Chris and Robyn love so much, and I'm sure they'll share with their daughter.
Bee stitch, for what a busy little bee the baby was on the inside, rings - for the circle of family and love that surrounds this child-
for both of her parents come from islands.
How did it end up? Blog, welcome Myrie...
or at least her tiny feetsies, that's as much of our wee niece her parents are ready to share with you, and they get to choose. She's very new, and they're keeping her lovely, perfect, healthy baby self close - for now.
(PS. Her middle name isn't Martha, but I think it should be.)