I started this project about a year ago and only raised about half of what I needed to get this book up and running. After having knit nearly 500 bears, my arms and hands are starting to crap up badly, and I need to take one month away from knitting them to finish this book and rest myself. I live off about $600 a month from knitting my teddy bears and the funds will be used to take that month away from knitting to finish "Will Knit For Food" and recooperate some.
In the summer of 2010 I lost my job, then my savings, then my home. With no where to go I ended up living in the woods with my little cat Mario. We were 20 miles from the nearest town. Desperate and with only $2 left to my name, I started knitting teddy bears to sell so that I could feed myself.
I eventually made enough money to make it out of the woods, but little Mario and I were still in constant danger, always trying to find a place to live, always searching for a bed for us to rest in, food to eat, and still I kept knitting these teddy bears to keep us alive. We've at least found ourselves with a studio apartment now, a hot plate to cook off of, and a bed to sleep in. But, we're still not completely out of the realm of danger of being homeless again.
I want to write a book about my experience over this last year and a half, a book called "WILL KNIT FOR FOOD." As you can see by my photo, I'm hardly the first person you'd think of when you consider knitting. I look like I'm more suited for Nascar races than anything. I'm scruffy, scrawny, and with my drawl, an easy peg for being a redneck.
But, these teddy bears that I knit saved my life. Without that talent I would have starved, would have fallen through societies cracks and would have been tossed to the side by life quickly.
They still continue to keep me fed daily. I knit three to four bears a day, each of them bringing in a little hope when they sell, each of them allowing this little cat that I wouldn't part with, some sense that we can actually survive this time. We can.
But, we're in trouble. I have hope that this campaign will help Mario and I go from day to day to something more secure. Something we can rest with close to our hearts and remember that people care.
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You can read more of my moments, both good and bad, on my blog: