April 11, 2016
It's been a year today that my Nani passed. These momentous occasions make me think about time, and how fast it flies by. I miss her; but, to be honest there was often many years between visits and phone calls between us. Far or near, communicating or not she has been and will always be part of my crafting, my knitting, my making.
We had a connection that was not that complicated. I remember one vague memory of a feeling like she disappointed me but I don't even remember what she did, or what I was expecting. As a kid I didn't see her often, we lived coasts and a country apart; I was on the West in Canada and she on the East in the USA. What we shared was a common bond of craft. When I was little, Nani would send me beautiful wooden carved doll house furniture, detailed min woolen needlepoint rugs, dolls and doll clothes; everything was always handmade and beautifully crafted. When she came to visit she was always making something, either working on a needlepoint tapestry or knitting a sweater. I always felt she 'got' me, she understood me and she was a huge inspiration.
She did not teach me to knit, my mum taught me when I was 6; but, the gift of craft was passed on from Nani, to my mum and her sister and then to me. This generational connection is something so special, something strong and unbreakable.
In November 2014, mum and I visited Nani for the last time in New Hampshire; there were amazing moments, and ugly moments. My Aunt Toddy came out and Uncle Joe too, we got to meet up with Cousin AK, his wife and meet their adorable little girl Hazel; In some ways, Nani was a connector, most family reunions centered around her. Amazingly, through her Dementia, she always knew who we were; that last visit we got to share treasured moments together and say good buy. Between visits Toddy, mum and I often found ourselves at local yarn shops; this shawl caught my eye, it is on my list to make: May Bells Shawlette.
This blog is about inspiration. Each Monday I try to show you something new to spark some craft/knit excitement whether it is showing you new patterns, kits, tools, techniques, projects. This week feels a bit somber as I take you down a memory of my late Nani. I feel sad, but I also feel like she never left. She lives in each stitch I knit and I feel thankful for the gift she passed on to my mum, and she to me at such a young age. I feel hopeful with the resurgence of knitting and fiber crafts, the younger generations will also be gifted with the skills to craft and make. I hope that I can inspire you to make, to teach others and to pass on this amazing gift of knitting. It is bigger than we know, it helps us in ways we might not understand and it connects us and creates community in ways that are essential.