Dear Aunt Agnes, Thank You For The Socks

My Aunt Agnes was a knitting fiend! I was always getting something knitted from her when I was a kid. Usually something goofy or embarrassingly wearable, little dolls with knitted or crocheted dresses and often these weird socks or knitted booties.

Though I loved getting presents as a kid, I wasn't all that fond of Aunt Aggie's presents. I got one every birthday and at Christmas every year until she passed away. She was still sending me those dolls and socks when I was a teenager.

It's kind of sad when you get older and realize what a little snot you were when you were a kid. As I grew older I thought those presents were silly - for little kids - but my mom would force me to write thank you notes for them anyway. I really hated writing those letters thanking someone for something I didn't like.

I was too young to realize that it wasn't the present that mattered, it was the fact that I had an Aunt who loved me enough to send me something she had spent her time making. Unfortunately, my Aunt Aggie passed away when I was still too young and self-involved to make amends.

Recently, many, many decades later I was reminded of those dolls and those silly booties when a friend showed me a pair of knitted booties she had just gotten from a friend. It took me back in time to the days when I would open a package and find a similar knitting project in my gift box from an aunt who cared about me enough to send the gift.

So, in humility for my childishness and rudeness, and without further ado:

Dear Aunt Agnes,

Thank you so much for all the wonderful gifts that you knitted and sent me over the years. Now that I am older I know that they were created with love and sent to make me happy.

I just want you to know that the memory of all those gifts has brought me a very poignant moment of true happiness that you loved me enough to send something you had made personally. You never missed a birthday or a holiday, not once in all those years.

If that's not love, I don't know what is.

Your niece,
Little Terri
(my grown up name is now PopArtDiva - I'm sure you'd have a great laugh over that!)


  1. Thanks for the memory. I too had an aunt that would send me the most horrendous articles of clothing when I was younger. One that immediately springs to mind was a mint green tank top with HUGE orange flowers all over it. I dreaded opening her gifts and having to act pleased. Now that she is gone I realize how much her presence and her PRESENTS meant to me and I hope she knows how deeply she is missed and how much she is loved.

  2. Melodieann - I wonder how many of us had aunts like this?

    I also wonder what my nieces thought of the presents I sent them? Though I tried hard to consider their ages each holiday I was still 20 years older and "out of touch" with their generation. I wonder if my presents were their equivalent of knitted booties.

    I also think your aunt must have had some level of cool to send you a tank top - clashing colors and huge flowers aside!

  3. Terri,

    It's funny how life is. We don't think about things like those knit gifts being as meaningful when they happen, but later when we come to realize the sacrifice of time and labor, invested as an act of love.

    The letter to your aunt is precious.

  4. Anonymous2:04 AM

    Oh Terri, I can relate to your post! I just wished I could get one of those crochet items as a gift now.

    Thanks for shairng.



  5. My aunt Ann (where my middle name comes from) once gave me a walking black baby doll. The doll was as tall as me and she could walk. What did I do? I threw her down the basement during a hissy fit because I wanted a "Barbie." That doll stayed in the basement for years and collected cob webs. About ten years ago, I went to a collector's show and discovered that doll was a collector's item and had a value of more than $700! Don't I feel stupid? My aunt never bought me anything else again.

  6. Pam - a little maturity brings us some wisdom that we sadly lack growing up and the ones we love the most are usually the people who suffer from our lack of wisdom,huh?

    I wish I could have written this letter to her while she was alive.

    Betty - I know, wouldn't it be nice if we had just understood that those things would be of great value to us years down the road?

    Beverly - I'll bet the thing that hurts the most to you is not the fact of the value as a collectors item (that you probably destroyed by pitching it down the stairs!) but in the fact that you hurt your aunt, huh?

    I threw my high school ring out a window during a fight with a boyfriend and regret most the hurt I caused my mother in throwing something out the window that she worked so hard to get for me. What a little doofus I was!

  7. Rick Roseberry12:29 PM

    Hi Terri - I rember well Grandma Aggie knitting us stuff, but I always loved it. She made us those little knitted booties with the pom poms, and I coundn't wait until the next Christmas when they wore out because I knew she would knit another pair. They were SO warm! Not to mention the scarves and the mittens. I still have the "Round up time" cowboy quilt she made me as a kid, and several of the afghans she knitted I still use regularly. Best of all my daughter, Dawn, can't wait to inherit them! (She's got a few years to wait,at least!) I have several pictures of Grandma and Grandpa hanging on my wall, and I think of them both often. Thanks for the memories.

  8. Rick - thanks for stopping by! Yes, those slippers were warm! I never got a scarf or an afghan from Aunt Aggie though Mom did. I sure wish I had that afghan!


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