Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Karma and Penance

"You're sewing a little hat?" Mr. Wicke chuckled.

"Yup," I replied none too cheerfully.  I was on the second project of the 4-part Christmas Craziness Project.  The one that two months ago inspired cozy thoughts of homemade Christmases of years past.  The one that was soooo cute that I overlooked all the handsewing, handstuffing, handturning, and handcutting involved.  Little tiny pieces.  Little tiny stitches.  Big amounts of time.

"Is sewing little things easier?"

"What?"  Apparently he had never dressed Barbie Dolls as a young child.  I had.  Those little tiny buttons and snaps drove me crazy then.  

"Well, you hate sewing big things.  Is sewing little things easier?"

"Yeah, I know, and no, it's not.  I still hate it."  My fine motor skills have not improved since I was 10.

I may not have taken on this kind of project at all if it weren't for my Grandma Doty.  She had some of the coolest toys.  Old fashioned, quirky, and totally unique.  My favorite was a doll of Little Red Riding Hood.  But this was no ordinary doll.  No.  When you turned her over inside out, there was the wolf, dressed as granny.  I loved flipping that thing back and forth.  I played with it every time I visited.  I don't know what happened to that doll, and I've never been able to find one of my own.  But these little projects for my kids?  They kind of reminded me of that.  Quirky, unique, and special.

And it will all be worth it when my children open their packages and their eyes widen in delight.  They'll play with it...

...for about two minutes and then it will be on to something else.  Or more rightly, the toys will be sources of endless bickering:

"That one's mine!"

"I had it first!"

"She won't give me a turn."

"He's had it a long time!"

Karma tells me that they won't get it:  How sore my fingertips are, how many hours I've spent, how much love is involved.  Nope.  They won't fully appreciate it.

I know I didn't.  In fact, remembering one particular Christmas is cringe-worthy.  It may be the worst thing I have ever done to my mother.  And while she was visiting this past month, and helping with project number one, I apologized--again.  I don't believe for a minute that it made us even, but she graciously forgave me again anyway.  She's kind like that.  So kind that I doubt she'll even take pleasure in seeing me get my paybacks on Christmas morning.

(to be continued...)