For those of you who don't know how this all got started, let me tell you a little story.
On April 12, 2005 our oldest son left for Iraq for a 12-month deployment. It wasn't easy. In the many emails I had with him I asked if I could knit him something, but he said that he was issued with everything he needed. That was until November 19, 2005. We were at Edgar's Place for the weekend. I was up at 5:00 a.m. with the dogs when I checked my emails (because he was 12 hours ahead of us). The LT sent me an email asking me if I could send him 288 small knit stockings for their holiday party. This was on a Saturday morning.
The Wednesday before I had a thorn removed from the index finger on my right hand and had a huge dressing on it. On Thursday, Susan came to my office over the lunch hour to teach me how to do circular knitting. She came in with double points, two circulars, and the 40" circular for the magic loop. She took one look at my finger and said "one circular is all you can handle." So I mastered making a baby hat with the 40" circular needle.
So here I am on Saturday morning with a request for 288 small knit stockings. I went outside with the dogs for a walk and looked up into the stars and said "God, did you see what the Lt has asked for? What do I tell him?" God very clearly told me "When your son is in Iraq, you don't say no." So I went back to the computer and emailed back "just 288?"
I then got on my computer and emailed everyone I could think of. To make a fabulous story short ... in two weeks we had collected 783 stockings to send to several companies in Iraq. It was a wonderful way for me to get through the holidays that year. We got back so many lovely notes from the troops, and certificates of appreciation.
When our Lt came back in March 2006, one of the first things he asked is if we were going to do Operation Holiday Stockings 2007. Of course we did. I asked him to find us a company to send the stockings to and he came back with a brigade, about 1000 soldiers, deployed to Afghanistan. Well, we did it again. Only this time we managed to compile 1576.
I promised my Lt that as long as we have troops in Iraq and Afghanistan I would head of Operation Holiday Stockings. No politics permitted, just love and prayers for our troops.
I have the first stocking ready, and am knitting the second one.