Afghans, Sweaters, and What Else?

I am almost finished with an afghan I am crocheting for my grandchildren. It took me over two years to crochet the last one, but this one will be finished in about five weeks. I have six rows to go and I will be done.

None of my grandchildren will see these afghans until they get married. I plan them to be wedding gifts. My husband and one of my daughters know where I keep them in case I am not around at their wedding dates, but I hope that I will be able to give them to them in person. So far, only two of the fourteen have married. My youngest grandchild is only four, so there is a long way to go. I have ten completed afghans now for twelve more unmarried grandchildren

I have been knitting and crocheting since my own first baby was expected. Around 2008 I decided to begin knitting sweaters for my grandchildren and eventually knitted for all 28 members of the family–my children, their spouses, the grandchildren, and some great grandchildren–and baby sweaters for the continuous repopulating of our church pews. (There have been a lot of babies born to young parents in our church over the past few years.)

I have a problem with knitting that I haven’t been able to solve yet. I relax when I knit. Even though I check the gauge at the beginning of a project, by the time I have knitted up to the armpits, my project has grown by as much as two inches, without any added stitches. If I knit tightly, to keep tension, my arms hurt, and it isn’t fun anymore.

One time I knitted a sweater for my son, who isn’t a big man, and it was so large I had to give it to someone else who had a much bigger frame. In order to complete the project for my son, I chose the same pattern two sizes smaller, used needles two sizes smaller, and reduced the amount of stitches to 83% of those called for in the pattern. It fit him. If any of my readers have a suggestion for me, I’m happy to hear it. It took me a while to figure out the math on that one, and I used it for several more sweaters.

Instead of buying new yarn for ┬áthe afghans, I’m working on using up the yarn leftover from all the sweaters I made. It should keep me busy for quite a while yet. Maybe after I finish all the afghans I should start working on baby sweaters for future grandchildren. We’ll see.