A giant box of home-made socks landed on the lunch table at work last week. You may know the kind: Knitted by a Grandma, Too thick to fit into shoes, crazy left-over wool bits that make for fun patterns, the kind of socks made with love.
Pollypocket’s Newfie Nann knitted up these beauties and send them west to her lovely granddaughter. These are not small socks and would never fit our young students. The best part of these socks are the fact they are made for people with giant feet – like myself. I have a dainty size 10. Sexy in all things footwear! HA! Giant Feet make every piece of footwear look humongous. Polly asked the staff if anyone wanted a pair. I took two pairs, one for me and one for Chatterbox, thinking they would be great bed socks for cold Edmonton winter nights. I was right. I wore them the first night and wanted more. These socks are so delicious and cozy, I imagined wearing a pair around the house as slippers. I even had thoughts drift to the time I was a camp counsellor and wore thick cozy socks in my Birkenstocks. That’s right, I was one of THOSE people. Socks and sandals, and it gets better. I wore long underwear under shorts. Why you might ask? Because my legs were cold. Usually my pants were drying from some water activity during the day, so I would slip into long johns and pull shorts over top to be decent. I would then pull on my favorite pair of socks and slip them into my birkies. Classy! Combine that with “camping hair” that I covered up with a bandana and I was the belle of the ball!
In 1988 I paid $8 for a pair of cable knitted socks from Woodward’s. $8 in 1988!!! That is about $50 in todays money, is it not? Those socks lasted me 20 years. so in the grand scheme of things, they were a typical Woodward’s $1.49 day deal! I loved how those socks made me feel. There wasn’t a seam inside to bother my toes, they weren’t scratchy or itchy and I loved the cables. Newfie Nann socks give me that same feeling, only I didn’t pay $8 for them.
There is nothing quite like the comfy secure feeling you get from socks. Or at least, I feel that way. Lately at work, I have found I need that feeling.
This school year has been different from others. Usually the school year is filled with children being diagnosed with something and then planning for them to over come or support what ever learning disability they may encounter. This year is not like that. It is filled with young ones ages 4 and 5, needing support of hugs and kisses. Its harder this year than any other. These young ones are feeling the effects of less food at home, less warmth at home,and less clothes at home. It makes me want to take them home, give them a bath and warm jammies with comfy bed socks and clean sheets, tuck them into bed with a snack of warm cookies and milk and read them Goodnight Moon. Then kiss them on the forehead and leave a night light on while the fall asleep knowing they are safe and secure in comfy socks and a warm bed.
I was one of those lucky kids who had warm socks and clean jammies. I had sheets that smelled of fabric softener and a teddy to cuddle with. I had a mommy and a daddy who read to me and kissed me goodnight. I had a bed time snack so my tummy wouldn’t wake me up at night and I slept through the night knowing my mommy and daddy were down the hall ready to keep me safe.
I took one of my little charges to our storage closet today. She came to school without socks. It is winter here in Edmonton, complete with snow that is here to stay for 6 months. We found some socks and she got to pick out kind she wanted most. Thick White Socks! Not the dinosaur socks, and not the pink floral socks. She chose WARM socks and acted as though I gave her the keys to the kingdom. She was so proud of her socks, she went and showed the other teachers her new socks. At the end of the day, she was ready to give me back my socks. I told her they were hers to keep FOREVER. I was rewarded with a smile that would melt the snow outside and keep it away for the winter. It is moments like these that make me love my job and hate my job all at the same time, all because I gave away a pair of socks that cost $1.
I am going to buy more socks. Thick, warm socks in various colours because I am sure there will be more days than not, where I will need to give away socks. This is how I will pay forward my deliciously thick Newfie Nann socks. Thanks Nann! Thanks Polly!