I know it is really peculiar.
Well it would be to our mothers; this chatting, writing, blogging, skyping and texting that we do in our world with all the technology that we have at our finger tips.
I am keeping my worldwide family aware of what I am doing using facebook and email, and have sent the link to my first double pointed needle attempt to my Danish cousins who live in America now, and who were in New Zealand as children.
It set me thinking – we need to know about our families, and there may be out there in this wide world many more people from the extended Rohde, Rode and Schrader family in New Zealand, America and Denmark who may not know that in the early years there were an abundance of us in New Zealand, and that we were all taught to cook, bake, knit, sew, garden and embroider by some, or all of the mothers.
The technology now enables us to keep track and to get to know one another again, where we once relied on our mothers to communicate by the hand writing of thousands of letters and sending them to and fro across the world. They are nearly all gone now – those mothers.
I know that all those very very strong women who emigrated to New Zealand, from Denmark, after the war, all had an impact on my interest in various creative forms from cooking, baking and gardening, to embroidery, crochet, and then knitting which has become my big big passion. I never did take to preserving, making jams and pickling cucumbers and there is one other skill that I never did master from those wonderful women and that was the knitting of socks.
All those great women knitted, sewed, embroidered and crocheted everything from dish cloths, hand towels, collars for our dresses, gloves, socks, and all those sweaters and hats and one can just go on and on about what they each did. They baked bread, made yeast buns which had such a delicious warm aroma – that made everyone come in from the fields to eat without even the tiniest call. Children came from everywhere. These mothers made cottage cheese, mayonnaise, pickled everything, bottled everything, and made fruit juice out of the skins of the fruits they had bottled. They stitched and gardened and cooked and still had times to read stories to us and to write letters, thousands of letters – to keep everyone informed. In short they were amazing.
I knit. I knit passsionately as they did, but they were sooo busy everyday that being a little flamboyant with yarns and so on would never ever have happened. Embroidery was the way to colour their lives.
I am so lucky. I am so lucky to have known these amazing women, my mother (mor), my aunts (Tante, Moster, Faster) and all their friends and latterly my mother-in-law. Without them I would not be me.
I am also lucky that I am able to communicate so easily, so readily, with my family using modern technology. What a long way we have come from letter writing to this. We are all so busy, or so we feel. Yet I think those women were really busy and they knew what was important – imparting knowledge, sharing skills, supporting each other and they were full time jobs and were valued and were valuable for the strength and safety of the community.
Anyway – this story all began because of my journey to create “Red Socks” with double pointed needles.
I have put it out there to my family using the technology (facebook), so I do have to add to my TO DO list here again. The RED SOCKS – the Sir Peter Blake Red Socks.
Now Best Beloved and our son requested these for Christmas last. They have an IOU as I haven’t even started these. I have knitted the fingerless gloves using double pointed needles – so I guess the socks will happen sometime, when I have the time to learn a new skill in knitting, if I can stop playing with the technology.
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