My grandmother and I have a friendly game of 'Who Can Spot the First Robin of Spring?' and most years I have lost this game. When I was little, I wasn't very observant because there were too many games of Pretend to play with my friends. I had fields to romp through and woods to crash through as I pretended to ride a horse or pretended to be a deer. Or I was busy insisting to my friends that now was the time to create the framework for a perfect shack under the trees before the undergrowth came in. All of that made an awful lot of noise and startled any robins for potential first spottings. I'm sure ALL the birds took wing and kept a safe distance from the racket my friends and I created when we were young!
A few times in my teen years and young adult years I spotted the first robin and triumphantly announced it to my grandmother. (I wonder now how many times she graciously let me win?) In more recent years, I've lived in a more urban setting and while there are plenty of birds year round, by the time I spot the first robin, I know my grandmother has probably already observed dozens in her quieter town.
This year I cheated.
Ravelry helped me complete my nefarious deed. Despite my initial intimidation at knitting my first stuffed toy, the pattern was easy to understand and not difficult. I chose a cotton yarn to prevent my robin from becoming fuzzy and it came together in only a couple hours. A more experienced knitter could complete the robin in an even shorter time.
The next day, I tucked the robin into a small box and wrote a few words on a notecard I made a couple of years ago: 'Spring is nearly here....and I've found the first robin! Love, Michelle.' I'm not confident that 'cheating' this year will make me the winner; my grandmother probably spotted the first one two weeks ago! It should arrive in todaay's mail and I do hope that it brings a smile to her face on this snowy March morning.