A Close Knit Family

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Capa tejida - mamalatinatips.com

Brought to you by Charmin Ultra Strong. We all go. Why not enjoy the go?

If you have read before how every Sunday a large contingent of my family get together, then you know there’s always some rite of passage to celebrate at these gatherings. Birthdays, anniversaries, baptisms, graduations, the list goes on, so there’s always a standing order for a party.

I’ve mentioned, too, how the women in my family sometime “prefer to sit and sew” when most all else is finished, the last piñata has been smacked, and there’s a moment. The kids by then are darting back and forth like a school of fish and the men are fixed on their dominoes or playing frontón (a game like racquetball).

It’s more than sewing really. It’s a time to catch up on what’s going on in everyone’s life and to learn new things from my mom and aunts. There’s a lot of knitting, crocheting, and needlepoint going on, too.

It’s a great way to have some beautiful, quality handmade things to wear without breaking the bank. We call it sobremesa and it’s a time honored tradition in our part of the world.

My aunt, for one, is a knitting machine. Members of the family come from all parts and she churns out sweaters, shawls, cozy socks, and scarves for them as if there were no tomorrow.

She made that capa draped across my shoulder in the photo above. Here’s the view from the back.

capa tejida vista trasera - mamalatinatips.comAnd here’s a close-up detail of the different knots.

capa tejida detalle - mamalatinatips.comMy aunt also makes purses. Here are just a couple to give you an idea, there are a lot more where these came from. I’m always interested to see what she will come up with next. I’ve received many compliments on different items she’s made for me over the years.

bolsa de mezclilla - mamalatinatips.comThis turquoise and black one is a favorite, too.

bolsa negro y turquesa  mamalatinatips.comI like how all the petals bend at the tips.

bolsa negra y turquesa detalle - mamalatinatips.comBut I digress.

The real story here is what my aunts and cousins have created for their bathrooms. I don’t know if there’s a friendly little competition going on, but each time we visit, new bathroom sets have materialized. It’s become a kind of funny amusement to stop by the washroom to see what’s new each time we arrive. My boys get a kick out of it.

A picture speaks a thousand words. So here goes. These first two photos represent some of the seasonal options they have available. The one on the left comes out in September before Mexican Independence Day. ¡Viva Mexico! is the famous grito or shout Miguel Hidalgo made from the city of Dolores Hidalgo. And the one on the right comes out before the Posadas at Christmas. It depicts the original star piñata.

Juego de Baño Navidad - mamalatinatips.comFloral and leaf designs are favorite themes, too. Sets like these, and these by all means are not the only ones, come out more in the late spring and summer.

Juegos de Baño primavera - mamalatinatips.comAnd of course there’s the popular crocheted seat, tank, and roll sets, which allow us to have our extra roll of Charmin at the ready. (Charmin is strong and soft, makes our guests feel special and doesn’t bust the budget, so we like it.)

juegos de baño tejidos - mamalatinatips.comHere are just a few more for your enjoyment. The blue in the middle is one of my favorites.

Juegos de baño - mamalatinatips.comIn all seriousness, though, whatever we are creating no matter how fun or practical, I really enjoy our times at sobremesa. On the practical side, it keeps everyone clothed and accessorized in handmade and decorated dresses, wraps, purses and the rest, all at very little cost. But more importantly, on the fun side, we’ve had up to four generations of women around the table all at once. So there’s always plenty of laughter, a spoonful or two of wisdom, a smidgen of gossip, and lots of love knitting us all together.

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Silvia Martinez
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