Tuesday, December 14, 2010

My Favourite Sweater short story by Kathleen Ann Gallagher

Kathleen Ann Gallagher writes: I have always loved sweaters. I don't particularly like winter, but I do like the warmth and comfort a sweater brings. I needed to find a Christmas gift for my mother in-law Mary, who was always cold, and sat daily in her recliner crocheting slipper socks. She handed them out to the entire neighborhood and anyone else she met. She kept a box of multi colored hand made socks by her door. When visitors left she would advice them to take a new pair. She never took no for an answer, so I have a set in every color.

I decided to try a specialty shop in town that carries vintage items along with antiques, candle, Christmas ornaments, and hand-crafted assorted gifts. You can spend an afternoon sifting through the eclectic mix of goodies. I spotted a gorgeous pink sweater that had tiny specks of white weaved into a lovely detailed pattern. It had a pretty pin with purple stones in front to hold it closed. It felt soft and cuddly and I thought it would suit her perfectly.

On Christmas Eve she opened the box and held the sweater up to her face. I don't want this story to sound sad in any way, but I knew this might be her last Christmas. She was in her late eighties and in failing health. She continued to crochet the slipper socks wearing the pink sweater through the winter. My mother in-law peacefully passed away in April.

The day came to clean out her house, which is never easy. We spent an entire day filled with memories some sad, most joyous. I found the sweater lying across the back of her chair. I smiled when I saw it. I took the sweater home with me and I feel a warm embrace whenever I wear it.


Gracen Miller said...

Oh, what a touching post, Kathleen! Isn't it wonderful to remember our loved ones who've passed during the holidays. I loved that she kept homemade socks and gave them to folks because it's the homemade gifts that touch my heart the most.


Leanne Dyck said...

Thank you, Gracen. Yes, I agree I think it is a touching tribute.

Anonymous said...


That is a beautiful story and what a wonderful gift she passed along to you:) I completely agree with Gracen...it's the handmade present that is always cherished above all others.

Happy Holidays!


Leanne Dyck said...

Hi Lisa,
Thank you so much for your comment. I have sent Kathleen an email to encourage her to come and have a peek at all the wonderful comments people are leaving. Hopefully she will have an opportunity to do so.

Kathleen Ann Gallagher's Place to Reflect said...

Thank you ladies. I was afraid my story would be sad for a holiday season. Remembering the love we've received is something to share. I write about what's in my heart and I'm happy that you like it.

Happy Holiday wishes to all of you.

Anne Holly said...

That's lovely, Kathleen! It's okay for holiday stories to be a little sad, because sadness is a part of happiness. Holidays, if done right, are a mixture of sad and joyous.

Kathleen Ann Gallagher's Place to Reflect said...

I agree, Anne. The holiday season is the perfect time to honor our loved ones by rememberance. Thanks for stopping by.

Holiday Wishes,

Anonymous said...

WOW! I love that story. So bitter-sweet. And beautifully written, I can see your sweet MIL in my mind's eye, cuddling into her favorite sweater, knowing you picked it especially for her.

Great job!

Kathleen Ann Gallagher's Place to Reflect said...

Thank you, Heather. I'm thrilled to have so many compliments on my sweater story. I better grab a pair of slipper socks, it's freezing outside tonight.

Happy Holidays,