Why we knit and crochet ...
This is definitely a room filled with activity ...
November; my month for squares, squares and yet more squares!!!
by Valerie Zalewski
In reality it all started at the end of October. I was informed by a lady, who is very active in a local parish, that she had a big package of squares for me. They were knitted by an elderly parishioner and there were just under 100 squares.
Then I was invited to the 4th annual presentation of squares from the residents of various local EHPADS. An EHPAD is a medically assisted residence for the elderly and disabled unable to care for themselves. Many of the residents are Alzheimer patients or suffer from senile dementia.....but they love knitting! Every year we have a formal gathering where I'm presented with the year's harvest. There is always some entertainment and then tea. It's a very moving experience for me as these ladies are grateful for having something useful to contribute. They greet me with hugs and kisses and thanks. I have to keep explaining to them that I'm the one to be thankful for their continuing effort. The saddest part is the absence each time of one or two knitters who passed away.
Each year there between 1500 and 2000 squares. Of course they are not all perfect and there's often a lot of "tweaking" to be done before they are ready to journey to SA, but each and every one is a valuable addition.
Here's a sample of this year's collection.
There will be a few more to add as I've been invited to tea by another EHPAD who couldn't make it to the presentation, but wish to give me their year's production.
So, you ladies in SA who do such a wonderful job of assembling and sewing our squares into blankets, get those needles ready!
Christine updates our album regularly with photos she receives from our volunteers in South Africa
There is often happy chit chat with lots of 'hoorahs' and 'yippees' as our contributors continue to spot pictures of their work. It's always extra special when one of our volunteers finds the time to join in the discussions.
Along with many other encouraging words, Estelle says,
"Thanks to all of the contributors for your time knitting and crocheting these magnificent squares."
Or whether the weather be hot,
We'll weather the weather
Whatever the weather,
Whether we like it or not.
There's lots to like in the temperature squares appearing in Anneke's
What are temperature squares?
The basic idea is that you knit or crochet a square for a blanket in a color that coordinates with the temperature.
Check out the gorgeous squares and blankets and find out what the weather is like in ... ... ...
There's still time to share the weather forecast for your area!
This is not good ...
URGENT MESSAGE RE: CUSTOMS SLIPS COMPLETION
When filling out your Customs Declaration Forms, PLEASE declare 0 or 1 as the value. Anything more incurs duty.
We are all aware that Knit-a-Square in South Africa operates on a shoestring budget. Monthly donations are used to keep the operation running and help to cover the cost of KasVan gas for the distributions, expenses incurred in keeping the office running, and a myriad of other small expenses each month.
One of the expenses that Ronda has to deal with is the occasional charge levied by the South African Customs and Excise. Some of these are unavoidable, even when we have filled out the Customs Slip correctly, and are usually small, manageable amounts.
HOWEVER, IT IS IMPERATIVE THAT WE TAKE GREAT CARE IN FILLING OUT THE CUSTOMS SLIP SO THAT RONDA DOES NOT INCUR ANY UNECESSARY CHARGES.
All of the customs slips have the option of declaring the parcel as a 'GIFT'. PLEASE BE SURE TO DO THIS.
All Customs Slips have a square for declaring VALUE. Please declare the value as $0 so that no charges will be made on your parcel when it arrives in South Africa. If your postmaster insists on a value, please declare $1.00.
DECEMBER PATTERN OF THE MONTH
Knitted Teddy Bear Pattern by Roz Goodwin
Ronda is running out of toys to give to the children during distributions and has appealed for more so this month I am promoting some of the toy patterns in the KAS Pattern Book.
Knitted KAS Cuddlebug Pattern by Christine Johnson & Karen Bennett
Children in South Africa have very few, if any, play things. A toy will be a wonderful companion for a lonely child.
Knitted Teddy Hand Puppet Pattern by Shelley Pearson
Crochet KAS Cuddlebug Pattern by Elaine Jones
Good quality second hand cuddly toys can also be sent to Knit-a-Square. Many can be found at bargain prices in charity/thrift shops and make a wonderful gift for a child on distribution day.
Crochet Teddy Bear Hand Puppet Pattern by Andrea Palmatier
Loom Comfort Doll Pattern by Denise Canela
Visit the KAS Pattern Book where other patterns are available. Please try as many as you like.
Isn't this a wonderful way to help support the fabulous work of Knit-a-Square South Africa!
The October 2017 Squares List is available.
Please visit the website: www.knit-a-square.com
Click on 'Received Squares'
Graph “Squares” up until and including October
The October 2017 Squares List is available on http://www.knit-a-square.com.
Click on "Received Squares".
354 parcels were received and opened and the total contents were:
15,898 squares (equal to 454 blankets), 1,285 hats, 563 pairs of handwarmers, 379 toys and many other goodies (marked with a "x" under column "Other" in the Squares list).
To see more graphs and details, please click [HERE]
We are very fortunate to have our items opened, sorted, and distributed by so many wonderful volunteers in South Africa! Each and every one of them is a treasure ... including Leanne! She has a very important job and does it extremely well. She helps to close the gap between South Africa and you! Don't miss her current and past accounts of activity in the KASbarn where she introduces us to the volunteers, answers our questions, and gives us all ...
by Leanne Hunt
Bongi and I were back at the barn today, ready to lend a hand with the packing of blankets and sorting of squares. There was a lively atmosphere as the volunteers milled around one end of the long table. After greeting everyone and letting them pat Tango on the head, I asked what all the excitement was about. Ronda was away and had, it turned out, messaged Mabel about collecting the post. Plans were being made about who would go and when.
Just one more thing ...
We are all waiting patiently for a list of our Monthly Themes for 2018 so we will know what kind of yarn to ask Santa for.
Good news! It's on its way. The list, that is ... not the yarn ...
Watch next month's KAS Snippets for the full lineup.
In the meantime, we'll let you in on a little secret. In January, Amy will start us off by hosting a Teddy Bears Picnic. And if we know our Amy (and we do know our Amy) January will be filled with fabulous, fantastic fun!!
So when it's your turn to whisper in Santa's ear, you can simply say "YARN!" and he'll know exactly what you mean ...
Thanks Glo - another great issue!
How sad to think that Ronda got stung for such a large amount of Customs Duties! Thanks for bringing this to our attention.
We used to have a discussion entitled Zero Tolerance in the Postage section, but I see it has been moved to Closed Discussions. It shows sample of customs slips for various countries. It may need some updating, but perhaps one of the Mods could re-activate it so that new members will be aware and older members can review it.
You can read the discussion here
Hi Anne, yes it's too bad some people don't realize there will be customs duties when they add a value to their parcels.
The parcels usually come from those who don't visit the forum or FB. However for those who do, the Zero Tolerance is listed in Postage Information under Helpful Hints. To make it easier for people to find all the necessary postal information in one place, the information was consolidated into one discussion in November 2016.
Here is the link: http://forum.knit-a-square.com/forum/topics/postage-information
This postal information is also listed on the website.
Thanks, Linda, for the link. I am familiar with that page - I wrote it. However, I do think that in light of the large expense Ronda has incurred it might be a good idea to re-insert the Zero Tolerance discussion as a stand-alone piece so that the information could appear in a couple of places. Perhaps even an occasional News Flash on the main page would be in order.
In their enthusiasm to participate, it is quite likely that new members do not read through all the information we have posted on the forum and website. If large duties are incurred by certain parcels, would it be possible for Ronda to send an email to the sender of those parcels, or if they have not included an email address, send them a letter by snail mail?
We work so hard to keep KAS financially afloat, it seems a shame that $$ get wasted on customs duties.
Christine, thank you very much for your thoughts. The term "Zero Tolerance" can be associated with negative behaviours here in Canada as well, but until you mentioned it, it never occurred to me to consider using a different title. Thank you for bringing that to our attention!
As much as I would like to take credit for writing that 'article', I must decline. Our dear Anne P wrote that and more. I just lifted that from her post because, like you, I liked the way she said it :)) xo
Glo, you always write so well, I assumed the article was yours; but I am not at all surprised that it is Anne's work! The little characters at the beginning and end certainly help too :))
Hey, what can I say! Anne and I are a great team ... hahahaha ... xo
This sounds like a good idea Arlene.
I have copied and pasted it into the KAS UK Facebook page - I hope that people will get the message and Ronda will not have to pay out again for a very long time, if at all!
I suppose people maybe put the value of the yarn they used.......? I always put zero and my post people never query it, thank goodness. They have got so used to me arriving with my KAS parcels now that when I went in with some other parcels - gifts I was sending to the USA - they were all ready with the economy small parcel setting - lol
What a wonderful edition of Snippets ! It is lovely to have everything that has happened this month summarized in Snippets. I'm looking forward to re-visiting the Uthando distribution photos. Thanks so much Glo.
Thank you Glo. Love your style of writing. A big hello to all you Nova Scotians,