In the middle of the living room - for no reason grander than it has no other place to go - lives a cedar chest. Inside of that, live all of the "retired" handknits. It doubles as a 'coffee table' and is therefore covered with piles upon piles of books which distract the curious from opening it. But once in a while, every so often, Mama does. To add something to the pile that's been outgrown. To make sure that the lavendar and cedar is doing its job to keep the moths away. To touch the yarn and laugh and sometimes cry just a few happy tears, remembering baby years. And to pull things out that might just fit someone else. Someone growing into a new size, and therefore a new handknit (originally for her big sister).
Quickly, it just becomes part of the wardrobe - part of the laundry pile - and part of the everyday wear for a while. But for a moment, a delightful moment when it is first pulled out again, it's always a pleasure to pause and remember the babe for whom it was made, before handing it over to the babe for whom it fits. To notice their similarities - oh, that two year old belly, and oh, that blond, blond hair that I know will soon darken. And the humor and the coyness from both. And yet, so different they are, each of them their own person.
What a pleasure it is to knit for these babes of mine.