The pattern for Bea is now available for purchase. Bea uses 1 skein of Twinkle Soft Chunky and I was able to knit 2 as written from just 1 skein. Knit in super bulky yarn on us17 needles, this hat flies off the needles. The hat has a large leaf motif that repeats 4 times around the head, because obviously I am not over knitting leaves yet.
I will be donating 50% of the proceeds from the sale of this pattern to the pancreatic cancer action network throughout 2009.(update:thanks so much everyone, i was able to donate just over $150 thanks to your purchases).
I had this whole plan for a post about pancreatic cancer, and how it has affected the people I love, but every time I tried to write it, it just made me overwhelmed with sadness. So here is an abbreviated version:
"B" was my grandmother. She was tough, crafty, and an amazing polish cook. She took care of everyone, even if it was sometimes a thankless job. She lived in the same neighborhood as me, and I saw her every day of my young life. Though she tried to hide it, one day she started feeling ill. She was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer soon after, and within 11 weeks, she was gone. Just like that. Stolen from me and my family, by stupid cancer. Although, at 12 years old, this wasn't the first time I had experienced the death of a loved one, it was the hardest. Her absence was just so obvious in my everyday life.
Her memory is very much alive though. Over 2 decades later, her sisters still talk about her all the time, stories both sad and silly, that I never had the chance to hear from her.
I cringe when pancreatic cancer is mentioned in the news, or conversations. It seems to be an especially cruel cancer, with symptoms rarely showing until it's in an advanced stage. And although it clearly can be hereditary, specific genetic markers have yet to be found.
A few months ago, another family member was given the same awful diagnosis. We are all sad, but hopeful. Although there's not much I can do to fix it, raising a little money for an organization that specifically deals with this cancer certainly can't hurt.
If big leafy hats aren't your thing, but you still want to give, there's an online donation form on on their website.
I'll be making the donations every 2 months and then updating the total amount donated here.