Even before we retired, I wondered about what I could do from the road to make a difference. We kept my Bernina sewing machine because I thought maybe there would be some way I could use it and the first fall we were in Arizona, we met Orv and Nancy Hazelton. They pulled into the same RV park we found and we went over to introduce ourselves. We had known about Nancy for some time because she was Nick Russell’s doctor and Nick wrote about her and Orv in his blog, Nick’s Blog on gypsyjournalrv.com. Nancy had her sewing machine out and showed me the adaptive garment she was working on for an organization called Sew Much Comfort. She gave me contact information for the group and I made a pair of shorts for use by a wounded warrior, sent them in and was approved to sew for them. However, I also learned that we didn’t have an ideal place for the sewing machine. My chair was always in the way and the surface height for the machine made my back hurt. So I put that idea on the back burner.
Last winter when we were in Yuma, my friend Lori was struggling with a health challenge and mentioned on her CaringBridge site that someone had given her a prayer shawl she really appreciated. That struck a chord with me. When our kids were young, I did a lot of knitting but I hadn’t done much for years. Google, being my friend, provided me with a knitting pattern for a prayer shawl, along with the “mission statement” of the knitters.
The shawl is knitted on a three stitch pattern, knit 3, purl 3 from one end of the row to the other, reminding the knitter of the trinity with each group. Each shawl is begun with prayer for the recipient, knitted with prayer and presented with prayer. Sometimes I know who I plan to give it to when I start, sometimes that becomes clear to me as I knit, but I pray for many, many people as I work. I hope that each recipient will be blessed by their shawl but if not, I know I am!
This summer in Lake George, CO I met some women who meet with a group at their church to knit prayer shawls! I was blessed to receive from them the folder of information they hand out to new members, which includes the instructions and an illustrated presentation message to give with the shawl. Lo and behold, I had “accidentally” been knitting with the very yarn they suggest, a very soft variegated, easily found one.
I’ve since completed and given away 3 prayer shawls to friends and relatives who are going through challenges and need a special touch. Since we’re on the road a lot, I can’t always be there to give hugs but the shawls can serve as a reminder.
LeRoy’s cousin Delores has recently moved into a care facility, a very difficult transition. Saturday I was able to take her the shawl I made for her while we were in Missouri.
If anyone is interested, feel free to ask. Or ask my friend, Google!