Monday, August 20, 2007
This Teddy is...
dressed to a T! A great big orange and white University of Tennessee Volunteers T! I accepted the challenge of the Football-A-Long group to knit a teddy bear sweater in my team colors, something I had never done before. Not only did I use orange and white, but I did my 1st stranded knitting (fair isle) in the orange and white checkerboard and my 1st embroidery in the cross-stitch T--both iconic symbols here at Tennessee. This was my 1st top-down raglan, knit on DPNs due to the (not-so-small) size, and so it was truly a challenge for me to create/knit.
The purpose of the challenge was to knit sweaters to be donated to a charity that gives the dressed bears to organizations that deal with distressed/traumatized children. It's a good thing, but I have one big problem--I love the sweater so much I just can't part with it. It's been a really rough week with my Daddy going through angioplasty... again and coming to realize just how close he came to dying... again. The emotions of it all kinda caught up with me as I knit on this little sweater. This little sweater is really about a different kind of team spirit that has nothing to do with football, rather it's about my alma mater where I just spent 8 long years struggling to get my PhD. It's about the University where my father devoted his life to his students and colleagues for decades. It's about the united spirit of devotion to a place he and I uniquely shared. And so it will stay in a corner of my room where I find solace and inspiration--right next to that big honking diploma that carries my name and that of the University of Tennessee and says Doctor of Philosophy in bold print. It will remind me of the Team Spirit of the Drs. Plaas and our shared love for the University and education and research and all the good times we spent at UTK together. Go Vols!