The Stocking Queen

There are times that I question my intelligence. If I had said yes, I could have
saved myself hundreds of hours of work. Hours spend peering through a
magnifying glass trying to thread a needle. Hours spent cutting out microscopic
pieces of felt, and sewing on tiny little sequins and teeny beads. What the heck
was I thinking?
It began innocently, when my husband and I were first married. I hand
embroidered Christmas stockings for each of us. They were extremely time
consuming, and I didn’t enjoy the process.
When our first child was born I wanted a special Christmas stocking for her, but I
wanted something that would be easier to make. I decided on a felt applique
stocking kit. How hard could it be, right? I spent the last month of my pregnancy
surrounded by tiny beads, piles of sequins, a dozen threaded needles, and pointy
little scissors. I was blissfully unaware of what was to come.
Stocking making became more difficult as our family grew. Finding the time to
make them, having to stash away all the tiny and sharp bits and pieces. It could
only be worked on at night, after my young “helpers” were asleep. But it was
worth it, I knew these would last a lifetime.
Each Christmas I beamed with pride, as I placed them on the mantle. All five hung
side by side above the fireplace for 30 years.
When my oldest daughter got married, she asked if she could take hers to her
new home. My reaction was immediate. “No,” I answered, “that is mine, it belongs
here.” I was aghast at the thought. I was not going to break up the set. Not now,
not ever.
Instead (here is where my brains malfunctioned), I offered to make a new one for
her, AND for her husband. Seriously, what was I thinking? Bam, I was back in
stocking making mode. As the mother of three, I should have thought that
through more carefully.

A few years, and a huge memory lapse later, I was going to be a Grandma! I
poured over the catalog of stocking selections. I became a stocking stalker. There
were so many choices. What color scheme, Santa or no Santa, left facing or rightfacing? I couldn’t wait to get started. I actually took some embroidery classes. I
wanted to be sure that my stitches were straight and even. My Grandbaby was
going to have the most awesome stocking ever. I know, some people never learn.
I was blessed with five Grandbabies, in under five years. I became, “The Stocking
Queen.” I have cut, what seems like, millions of pieces of felt and added zillions of

Had I known where it would lead, I would have smiled when she asked for her
stocking. “Yes, sure you can take it,” would have been a much smarter response


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