Friday, May 6, 2011

Spending Time with my Grandma...

I'm flying through the blocks for my Diary Quilt, and just sent off an email this morning about these next two blocks, so it's time to share them here with all of you.

quote says "live, laugh, love" which embodies my (late) Uncle's approach to life
the thing up top is a Sputnik Lamp/Clock, one of his 50s Decor items
the colors are colors that remind me of my Grandma

"Jewel Box"
represents my years working for my Grandma at her Art Gallery
She sells Native American jewelry and art, as well as art by local artists from her area
The colors represent the stones (turquoise, coral) used most often in the Native American jewelry she sells.

Both of these are for my Grandma, who was a huge influence in my life. Through my very tumultuous high school years, she was sort of the anchor, the steadfastness, the security that I needed. She poured a lot of time into me, in subtle ways that, at the time, just seemed like normal Grandma/Grandkid stuff.

And, on one level, they were. She's just that kind of Grandma, and all through my life she was there. Painting lessons when I was young (she's the source of all the creative genes in our family), and help with Halloween costumes (both in ideas and supplies), and as I grew older it was shopping trips and a job.

My Uncle Ron introduced all of us to the wonders of shopping at ritzy resale shops in our area, and the joys of finding bargains. Clothes, fashionable and well made and designer labels, tags often still on. Discarded by the wealthy and picked up for a steal by us normal folk. For a teenager who had to buy all her own clothes, this was a true treasure trove.

And stuff. He shopped mainly for 50's era furniture and decorative items; his house was gorgeously decorated in a 50s retro look, mostly all with vintage stuff he found at resale shops. And he took us along on these shopping trips, visiting thrift shops and finding what treasures they had to offer.

I loved it. Not just the bargain hunting, which was awesome, but also the time with my Grandma and my Uncle Ron, and later on with my Aunt Brita as well. It was nice, with all the junk that was going on in my high school years, to have a safe haven of family who loved me and valued me and enjoyed spending time with me.

When I was 15, I asked my grandma to hire me at her art gallery. She did. I of course loved the chance to earn some money, but even more I loved spending each afternoon after school, and every Saturday, there with my Grandma and Grandpa. Those are some of my most cherished memories, and I continued to work there throughout high school, and then on weekends home from college, and then on an as-needed basis once I was home and married and a stay-at-home Mom, all the way until we moved down here to Brazil.

It's no wonder, then, that I'm so close to my grandparents, and that they are so well represented in my quilt.

Who was a strong positive influence in your teenage life? Was it a family member, or someone else? 


  1. What a treasure that you have such dear memories (plural!) of your grandparents!! Really... that is such a blessing. Thanks, Grandma, for sharing your creative gene with The Reader!! :)

  2. I adore the little clock and how you used the turquoise. Very clever. :-)
    My biggest influence on my teen years was my mother, but my grandmother played a huge role during my childhood. She lived across the street from us and always had some sort of baked good waiting for me when I walked home from school. God bless all the moms and grandmas out there. Happy Mothers Day!

  3. You know I'll love the turquoise - but that is a great quote and I try hard to live up to it too. So fun to have good memories of grandmas, I was blessed with them too.