On December 28th, my brother and sister-in-law celebrated their 5th anniversary, and Ketra sent me this fabulous picture of the happy couple on their special day. CONGRATULATIONS!!!
Up until this point, I've tried to be good about following the list for the traditional anniversary gifts. (You know, first year = paper, second year = cotton, etc.) However, as December approached, I knew I would not be able to continue with my plans for their wood gift for five years no matter how hard I tried. Time was just too scarce. So, while trying to deal with the disappointment of not being able to carry on with that, I tried to think of something special I could give them (possibly, make for them) that would be something that Aaron and Ketra would truly enjoy. Then it hit me. I could make them a fleece Cubs blanket. Something to keep them warm for the cold games and something to give them a little extra padding for the long games.
I headed out to the fabric store with many questions. It had been a while since I had made a throw, so I didn't even know how big they were supposed to be. The fabric cutter assured me that most are made to be about 1.5 yards long. I explained to her that I wanted my sister-in-law to have a fighting chance at part of the blanket, so I wanted to make theirs twice as long. So, 9 feet of Cubs fabric was cut.
Then, two days later, another idea hit me. (Or, maybe it was the same idea hitting me just a tad harder!) What gifts could be more perfect for my partners in crime at work, Laurie and Phillip? We're the only Cubs fans in a sea of Cardinals fans. We get plenty of grief for our loyalty, but we know how to hold our own. And, we do it proudly without any apologies. So, I found even more Cubs fleece. Being that I was in the heart of St. Louis, I received some strange stares that day... but I tried to hold my head up high as I exited the store... while realizing that I had purchased enough fleece to also make another for my college buddy and die hard Cubs fan, Mike.
It took me a little while to get everything cut and tied, but, in all, I made one huge blanket for Aaron and Ketra and three smaller throws for Phillip, Laurie, and Mike. I was so excited as I sent Aaron and Ketra's gift in the mail and as I wrapped up the others. I couldn't wait for them to be opened.
Ketra sent me a photo to show me Aaron really appreciated the blanket. I felt badly that Laurie received hers so late due to the hectic schedule at work, but hopefully she got a little hint of what she'd receive when she saw Phillip's throw when she returned to the office. Phillip decided to cover his conference table with his and promptly invited our most aggressive Cardinals fan, Kurt, down to his office for a nice long chat. Kurt could barely stand to be in the room... let alone that close to the Cubs logo. I told Kurt if he really wanted one, I'd sure make one for him. He quickly declined the offer.
So far, the blankets have created a lot of fun. I hoped the gifts would help each of the recipients root a little louder for our dear Cubs while they surge toward victory.
Seriously. I think this could be the year.