Charlotte and I debated over wedding present to give for a long time. Nothing normal would do for us. This was our first wedding in the family. The present had to be special to match. Which meant that we'd have to make it ourselves.
Out came the knitting books, the needles, the wool. We consulted patterns, surreptiously bought new wool and beads, and knitted like mad. No one else knew of our project. We never spoke of it. But every spare moment, we'd grab our needles and knit, knit, knit.
As the deadline drew closer and closer, I started to panic. Still so much to do. How would we ever finish in time? But we wouldn't give up. Not after so many weeks of solid knitting. We battled on.
Mum came into the secret only a couple of days before the wedding. She contributed a gold box and a reel of gold ribbon. But the present wasn't done yet! I went into overdrive, knitting faster than ever, finishing the final piece on the way to the wedding practice the day before the big event.
Wedding morning dawned, and Charlotte sewed the last pieces together. We put the present in the box, and wrapped it in gold ribbon. Done! And only just in time.
It wasn't until the reception that we actually gave the present. Felicity took our large gold box and attempted to undo the ribbon. Then she handed it to Graham to undo the ribbon. Uh oh, I'd done it up too tight. Stepping forwards I released the tight knot and stepped back again.
Felicity lifted off the lid, moved aside the tissue paper and...
"Oh they're lovely." She lifted out, piece by piece, a woollen replica of the wedding party. The professional photographer snapped photo after photo. Everyone oohed and aahed as they identified themselves.
Next time there's a wedding, I want to make another special present. But the things I've learnt from this? Always start months ahead, and never give up.