Happy Thanksgiving Day

I love surprising people. This year, fate conspired with me to help me pull off one of the biggest surprises I’ve ever attempted.

To make a very long story short, I have to work this Friday, which means from 8-5 CST I have to be sitting at a computer, monitoring ticket queues and logging in to customers’ servers if they are having any problems that require administrative attention. This year, most of my family is having Thanksgiving dinner at my sister’s house in Albuquerque. It’s a 12-hour drive, which would make getting to her house and back to San Antonio in time to work really, really painful. I considered booking a flight, but I wasn’t able to find any return flights that would get me back to San Antonio any time before noon. So last weekend, I regretfully informed my sister that I would not be attending Thanksgiving dinner at her house this year (which really sucked, because I love my family, I love Albuquerque, and my sister is a culinary goddess).

Then on Monday I started begging my supervisors to let me have Wednesday off, and to let me work remotely on Friday. All of our work is done remotely, you see, because while we all do work in an office, the servers that we administer aren’t located anywhere near that office. We have to remotely connect to them, so my physical presence in the office isn’t strictly necessary.

My supervisors agreed, and I called my mother and stepfather to put the plan in motion. Yesterday morning the three of us bundled into a truck along with a dog, a trombone, a cello, a modest amount of knitting, a bag of golf clubs and assorted other travelmentia and we drove clear across Texas and New Mexico to arrive at my sister’s house just after sunset.

When I walked into the kitchen, my sister squealed and hugged me so hard she cut off the circulation to my head. I wish I’d had the presence of mind to have a camera handy, because the look on her face really was priceless.

And then we settled down for dinner, followed by conversation and knitting. My sister-in-law, Kelly, was working on her first knitting project – a pair of mittens for her partner. Kelly reminds me perfectly of the “I can do this” story from the Yarn Harlot’s first book – she’s a microbiologist and deals with all sorts of incredibly complicated diagnoses in her daily work. As I was teaching her how to drop down stitches to repair a mistake in her work, she said “This is harder than leukemia!” But she worked it out, and a few minutes and a glass of wine or two later, a half-row of accidental purls in the mitten had been smoothly erased.

In the course of showing her how to pick up the stitches correctly, I hit on a handy analogy for showing her how to see if she was picking up the stitch without twisting it. “When you pick up the stitch with the crochet hook, the legs of the stitch shouldn’t be crossed. Knitting is slutty.”

Happy Thanksgiving from Albuquerque, everyone! May your day be warm and happy and your knitting slutty.


I finally got pictures of my sister modeling her sweater! This is a sweater that she designed after I gave her a hank of Briar Rose Legend which I bought a year ago at Rhinebeck. I think she should submit the pattern to Knitty.


10 Responses to “Happy Thanksgiving Day”

  1. Kath Says:

    Great job on the surprise! And thanks – I’m working on a traveling scarf project so my knitting is extremely slutty – you just don’t even wanna know how much she’s gotten around in the past few months!

  2. Barbara from Nova Scotia Says:

    Your sister looks beautiful in her sweater. I definitely think she should submit the pattern to Knitty! Unless she wants to be all selfish-like and keep wearing a gorgeous one-of-a-kind. 😉 Lucky woman, either way.

    Three cheers for slutty knitty!

    (You should copywrite that. I suspect it will get around quite a bit!) HAhahaha pun fully intended

  3. janna Says:

    Mittens as a first project? I’m impressed!

  4. Enid Says:

    so cool!

    have a safe trip back home. 😀

  5. Ellen-Mary Says:

    What a beautiful sweater! It would be a hit on knitty if she decided to submit it.

    Bravo on the surprise.

    I also think the slutty knitting thing is going to catch on. It’s a great way to remember.

  6. Jody Says:

    Awesome surprise!!

    That sweater is gorgeous!

  7. Lola LB Says:

    I definitely agree – she should submit her design to Knitty!

  8. Denise Says:

    It’s wonderful when events come together to surprise family like that! I love the slutty knitting anology, I think I might need to “borrow” it for when I teach beginners! Your sister’s sweater is gorgeous and she should definitely share the design somewhere. Thanks for the picture.

  9. mom Says:

    David, thank you for making a wonderful holiday even better. I’ll ignore the slutty reference.

  10. Kate Says:

    I would totally buy that sweater pattern. Lemme know if she needs a test knitter!

    lol…. mittens as first project… no underachievers in your family are there???