a once and present pastime

in the evenings lately our family has been settling into the living room between 6:30 and 7:00, tea and projects in hand, and listening to an audiobook together around our fake (electric, portable) fireplace. heron draws, shepherd plays with playmobil figures, per plays or looks at books or lays on josh's lap or wiggles about, josh listens, and i crochet. it is just this year that i've discovered, through teaching my own children, that i am a kinesthetic learner--i need to be doing something with my hands to engage my ears. josh, a musician, an auditory learner, can simply listen. imagine that!

i have become one of those ladies who brings her embroidery or crochet project to church with her every sunday. one of those ladies who i always figured simply couldn't stop her productivity even for an hour-long sermon. now i am one of them, and i know that they, like me, actually listen best with their hands in use.

when i was about heron's age i would ride my bike over to grandma pritchard's house for crochet lessons every saturday, yarn & hook in my huffy's flowered woven basket. she wasn't my real grandmother, but simply "grandma pritchard" to everyone on the missionary base, all of us lacking the presence and mentorship of our own grandparents who would've otherwise taught us these skills. but every week we would sit together with my pink acrylic yarn and continue working on my stuffed bunny, its belly stabilized with a l'eggs pantyhose canister, or a vest for my mom, too warm for her to ever wear. the humidity of the jungle so thick, those acrylic yarns so sticky in our fingers that we'd shower them with baby powder to get the yarn to slide.

now i am crocheting again, for the first time in at least a decade, teaching my daughter heron to crochet. beautiful woolen yarns now, as fall descends upon us, our family gathered around the fake fire, with tea, and i begin a blanket for our newest little one.