When my younger two boys have extra time in the morning before school, they often go into the spare room and play Hero Factory guys on the pull out couch. Last week, they started doing something new. I went down to the family room and found they chose a new place to play, the family room couch. Once again, the Hero Factory bin was left out, though they had cleaned all the guys into the bin, which isn't bad. I saw something unusual on the couch, and thought, "Oh no! My knitting!!" They were playing in the exact spot I had left my Once Again sweater the night before (when Momma didn't clean up her play things, but I won't get into that) after deciding that I'd just move it first thing in the morning.
I looked where the knitting should have been and didn't see it. I saw this:
What? What exactly was going on here?
So, the boys decided to build this around my knitting. They propped the throw pillows from the couch around the knitting and project bag, and created a roof structure out of blankets, topped by the Coastal Ripple Blanket I made a few years ago. It's quite sturdy. I was a little confused about what they were trying to do, and immediately took it apart (after snapping a few pics) and tidied up the couch. My knitting went into its project bag, safe and sound. I should have been more careful anyway...
I'm embarrassed to say that the next day I found the same thing. (Ok, I probably shouldn't have left my knitting out again, I know this.) The boys built this "fort" around my stuff again, but they had cleaned up the toys and put the bin away. Still not sure what to make of this, I decided to ask them about it that evening. And to make a serious effort to put my knitting away. For real, this time.
When I asked the boys about what the little fort was, they said, "Oh, we built a fortress for your knitting."
You know, like it's something every kid in America does, right? They use it to play the guys and to protect my project. The villains have a base on the right side, and the good guys have their base on the left, in the corner. This way, they have a wall between them and they can attack from other sides, fighting all over the couch, including battles on the top of the fortress between the two camps (and above the knitting--for those who're concerned about that).
I asked, "Oh, so it's a place to have epic battles"?
Spencer told me, "No. The guys do play on the pillows, but the fortress is there to protect your knitting".
You see, in our house, no one touches Momma's knitting.
You don't touch it or "check it out", because it can get messed up. They know this. You don't sit right next to it and bounce around on the couch, because stitches can fall off the needles and drop down. We've learned the hard way (looking at you, lace weight shawl). You don't mess with it or play near it. It's important. And don't try to move it so you can play there, because sometimes that can cause dropped stitches too. Clearly, my kids know the knitting rules around here. I suppose this all makes me sound a little wacky, but you know you've said these things to others too. Right?
So my boys wanted to play, but they knew the rules. Thus, they figured out a workaround. I think it's pretty ingenious. It works for them, and it works for me. My knitting is safe, and they can play Hero Factory guys on the couch. They made a fortress for my knitting, and it's kind of the best thing ever. I still clean it up every time. I also find it there again most mornings. And I love it. I'm certain that my projects are not as important to them as they are to me. However, the boys do know how important it is to me, and that means something. They protect the yarn. They make me proud.