The stockings continue to come in. I love to take my time and look at each stocking and see the care and love in each one. It means a lot to know that there are people who do support our troops, even if the troops are involved a war no one talks about anymore. I remember the enthusiasm in 2005 when we gathered stockings for our troops. In two weeks we had over 1000 stockings and well wishes and prayers for our soldiers. In each succeeding year the number of knitters, crocheters and sewers dwindled, along with the various service groups, but the core group was still strongly supportive and involved. We made a promise to send these stockings until our troops were out of Iraq and Afghanistan. I have a feeling we will be doing stockings for a while.
To be honest, I wondered how we would manage 500 stockings this year, and prayed we would make our goal. There is power in prayer. So far we have OVER 500 stockings, and knitters and quilters, along with service groups and sewers making stockings, collecting items to put in the stockings, and donating cash for the postage. I'm in awe of these volunteers, and am overwhelmed with the love they put into each stocking.
Our troops do appreciate these stockings, if not cherish them. I was conferring with one of our knitters in Oregon and she told the story of a soldier who received one of our stockings four years ago. He said it was so heartwarming to know people back home cared, and that some one person took the time to knit a sock for him. He is going to be deployed next year, and yes, he is taking that stocking with him.
One interesting thing this year, however, is the lack of soldiers nominated to receive stockings. I know our troops are in Iraq and Afghanistan, and in other dangerous places, and I know we need to let them know we haven't forgotten them. If you have a loved one who has been deployed and would like us to remember them, please contact us.
Last night I went to the Eastside Knitting Guild and came home with more stockings. These knitters are amazing.
We also got stockings from Mary in Wisconsin through our Ravelry group, Operation Holiday Stockings.
Which now brings us to a grand total of 509 stockings. We also received stocking stuffers and donations for postage.
As you can see, we still have a lot of room on this table.
Now if I could just figure out this "improvement" on the blog, I'd be a happy camper. In the meantime, we are all centered and balanced (?).