Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Chanukah party with Mommy issues on the side

Speaking of Rosh Chodesh Kislev... I was wondering why my mother hadn't mentioned anything about our family's Chanukah party yet, and then I thought maybe the subject was a big downer for her because of where we were all at last year at this time.
 
(okay, yes, it is also more than three weeks away, but you don't know my mother if you think she hasn't planned every aspect of the next few weeks already...)
 
Then I realized maybe she hadn't broached it yet because of my very vocal Not Going to Parties Policy, which I've done pretty well with all year.  So I called our rav and asked... and he said, well, it's not really a party.  (he must know our family!!!)
Because it's a family gathering, over a meal, with no music, and maybe for other reasons, like the fact that it's mostly the same six relatives we see at every other non-party occasion... the verdict is officially:  Not a Party.
 
I emailed her to let her know; figured I'd take the initiative in case she didn't want to Go There.
Still.  That really doesn't mean I'm looking forward to it.  It's not that I don't like the six relatives, but I feel (rightfully so) like there are fewer and fewer of them every year, and nobody new joining us (at least in the last two years).
 
Speaking of my mother!  Because we really were!
 
She mentioned casually last week that she is knitting a hat for Gavriel Zev.
 
I was astounded, because my kids are just about the only ones in the universe living without my mother's knitted warmies.  She hands out hand-knit baby blankets, hats, bootees like popcorn when she hears of anyone having a baby.  One of Elisheva's teachers this year has a blanket from my mother, because she's friends with the teacher's mother-in-law. 
 
Meanwhile, we have a couple of sweaters, ten years old, that I saved.
Oh, and, somewhere, the white blanket that was supposed to be for YM's bris; she finally finished it sometime around his first birthday.  Not because she's slow, you understand... most likely because seven other people had babies in the meantime.
 
Nanny said (a little jokingly, a lot lovingly) once that she (Nanny) never gave me hand-knit stuff for my babies because I complained once.  That is entirely possible:  for a shy, quiet person, I have an astonishingly big mouth full of feet (all my own, stuck there in haste at one time or another).  Yet I cherished the two "popcorn" blankies she made for YM & EC. 
 
I like to think I have always loved hand-made gifts, but I suspect that has not always been true.  At some point, I probably did prefer mass-produced, brand-name whatevers.  Still.  It's often made me sad that we don't have more of my mother's knitting - and that everybody else and their uncle('s baby) seems to. 
 
So now - at last - a  hat.  Maybe; it must be a quiet, infertile season for her friends' kids.  Let's hope it stays that way, or he'll get his hat in June.
 
Oh, wait!  She made a hat for YM when he was three, I seem to remember.  I remember the hate, just not his age.  And he lost it the first day at the library.  Why YM and not ECH?  How does she decide that one grandchild out of four needs a hat?  She seemed appalled when I suggested she knit another hat for Naomi Rivka (I think we left it at "maybe").
 
Yes, I'm almost Officially Middle-Aged... and yes, I still have mommy issues!

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