It is the small simple things of life that bring us peace.

Friday, June 12, 2015

The pointy stick thing - part 2

In yesterday's post I started the story of my grandmother teaching me to crochet.  I really wanted to learn the two stick thing, but still was entranced with the one stick with the hook on the end and satisfied myself with mastering a chain stitch.

I went home with the yarn and the big red plastic hook.  I think it was sometime in second grade that one of the other girls in my class took up crocheting, so I began taking my yarn and hook to school in my satchel.  Recess was devoted to serious chain making. On our next visit to my grandparents house I took my lengthy chain along to show my grandmother.  Only thing was by this time the chain was attached to a tangled, not to mention dirty, wad of yarn.

The night we arrived I proudly brought out the chain and attachment to show my grandmother.  She lovingly bragged on me and simply patted the yarn and said, "in the morning we'll straighten this out and I'll show you how to add a row onto your chain".  As promised the next morning after the breakfast dishes were washed up we sat down to work.  She had me pull out the long chain; she explained that I didn't need that anymore.  She then patiently untangled the wad of yarn and then got up and went into the kitchen for a minute.  When she returned she had an empty oatmeal container.  She took her scissors and cut out a small hole in the top.  What are you doing I asked?  I'm fixing this box for you to put your yarn in so it won't get tangled up.  Sure enough, she dropped the yarn in the container, pulled it through the top, and put the top on the box.  Now, she explained, you are ready to make a single crochet!

Every time I pick up a crochet hook or pick up a round oatmeal box I think of my grandmother.  I still see her hands, worn from much work, with her small delicate silver wedding band winding up that yarn into a neat ball and dropping it into the oatmeal box.  She created many memories for me, but she also shared a skill with me that binds us together even now.

In later visits she bought me balls of that tiny thin thread that is tricky to use and crochet hooks with the tiniest of hooks.  I have these hooks and probably some that were hers in my tin of hooks.  But I am older and wiser and do not frustrate myself with the thin thread and little hooks anymore!  Instead I treasure the crochet pieces that I brought home from my mother's house.  I don't really know who made these ivory pieces, but they are delicate and look lovely on my dining room table under a centerpiece or on a little table with a pitcher on top.  I appreciate the skill and work that went to making them.

Next post we get to the pointy sticks!

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