Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Everything Grows Better

Everything grows better in sunshine and love. –Unknown

These are my paternal grandparents, Woodrow and Elaine. Cute, no?

When I posted about my other grandparents I had their birth and marriage dates, but I think I totally cheated and got most of that off my Grandma Betty's obituary. I'm not sure when these grandparents were married and I can only guess at the year my Grandma Elaine was born; December of 1930 — I think. She died in January of 1995, but the exact date escapes me. Grandpa Woody was born on November 15, 1927 and died on December 3, 2003 {I happen to have the program from his funeral right here}. I know I have all of this information down somewhere, I just can't find it.

This set of grandparents lived on the same {very large} block as our elementary school. From our house to theirs was a total of seven blocks — easily within walking distance. Coincidentally {or maybe it wasn't} Grandpa Woody's parents lived only two streets over and about ¾ of the way up the block from us. But that's not super important to my story. What is is that they were a big part of my life growing up. I inherited a few things from them. For instance, I got my love of pretty shoes from my Grandma Elaine. Sometimes I dream about her shoes. I also got my laugh and my hands from her. From my Grandpa Woody, I got my blue eyes and the ability to remember things in minute detail.

This cross stitch hung in their kitchen for the longest time; probably from 1984 or 1985 until my grandpa moved out of their house in about 2000.

It was a kit with pattern, floss and aida cloth that my mom bought who knows how many years before I found it in her things I asked if I could make it. It was my first experience with embroidery floss and counted cross stitch and it was so fun. I don't know how old I was when I did it, but I'm certain that I wasn't older than twelve. As I was working on it one day, my grandparents were over and saw it. My grandma liked what she saw and offered to pay me for it when I was finished. I think she gave me $10 for it.

I think it was a little bit inspired of my Grandma to buy it from me. It forged a connection between us. It increased the value of it and ensured that it would be something I would want to keep; I'll never get tired of it and want to get rid of it {things might have gone differently if she hadn't bought it from me}. I'd love to have it framed differently; matted and with a distressed white frame so that is more a piece of art. I had it priced out a few months ago {when I was having something else framed}, but even with my 50% off coupon, it was still well over $100, which just isn't in the budget at the moment. For now, it hangs in my kitchen, reminding me of times gone by.


Barb said...

What a sweet story behind the cross stitch, thanks for sharing.

Wanda said...

What a very special cross-stitch. So nice to have it hanging in your kitchen now. I'm sure you think of your grandmother everytime you look at it. I like your idea about a mat and white frame too for later. Check some other framers as you might find a deal.

Shay said...

I love to hear stories about things that have such a sentimental meaning to people.

This was lovely. Smart woman your grandma.

Angie said...

I started cross stitching when I was about 8. I don't know for the life of me where ANY of my projects are now. Which is kind of sad. I am glad you get to see some of your handy work from so many years ago.

Jennifer Lovell said...

That's such a special story about your cross stitched picture. A few weeks ago my mom gave me an old hand-stamped card that I had made and written to my grandma that she (my mom) must have found when going through their things (g'ma and g'pa have both passed on). It was so neat to know that she (Grandma) had saved the card I made for her. I'm glad you got to have that connection experience with your grandma.

Michelle said...

It's so special that your grandparents lived so close and could be a constant part of your life. Wonderful memories.

The cross-stitch your grandma bought from you is adorable. It was $10 well spent. :-)

Paulette said...

That is such a sweet picture of your grandparents, and a sweet cross stitch too! Isn't it amazing what a little encouragement (and reward) can do for the budding crafter? I think you could come up with a creative solution to reframing it...visit your local thrift stores and make your own distressed frame. Then just find someone to cut you a mat. I really want to learn how to cut mats. My sister learned in high school art class. I never took art class, but if they can teach HS students how to cut a mat, it can't be that hard! There's probably a DIY internet link out there somewhere. Anyway enough blathering. Have a great day!

Ivory Spring said...

That is darling, Elizabeth - you did a great job.