Friday, February 28, 2014

I cannot imagine the loneliness that is in a widow's heart. 
Oma knows her Heinz is gone and grieves profoundly, but in just a short time has forgotten the details of his death and struggles to remember that we even had funeral or that it was a beautiful celebration of a life well lived.
So I sit with her working my needles answering the repetitive questions, feebly attempting to calm her frustration of memory lapse.

I have always wanted to knit a circular shawl. Here goes!

I have learned to steer the conversation to the past. Stories of their courtship, of her life as a little girl....she and her sisters used to knit at night around the kitchen table listening to the radio....
I listen and work.
Beekman sleeves completed to the bust line and ready to be attached. My self imposed deadline for this one is March 1st.
Not looking to good.
Oma is encouraging of my efforts. Asking every few stitches to see what I am knitting.
and telling me that she and her sisters used to knit....
I never grow tired of hearing that particular story.

Socks for a family of friends finished a few weeks ago. Oma loves these. I should make her a pair.

How I wish her tired and bent hands could pick up the needles now.

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Happy Sunday

Because it is a happy day.
Everyday is a happy day. 
Even when one's heart hurts, we can look to the examples of lives well lived and smile.
Like our Opa, who followed his dreams and loved others to the fullest.

Herr, lass Ihn ruhen in Frieden

Thursday, February 6, 2014

From Child Care to Elder Care

With my father-in-law spending a bit of time in the hospital, family members have been rotating Mother-in-law care.
Her recent memory fails her these days with the exception of knowing for sure that the man she has known and loved for just about all of her life is ill and she wants to be at his side. 
He must rest and so I stall before taking her for a visit.

 I sit with Oma, answering her questions and having the same conversation over and over and over again, picking up my stalled Beekman as a diversion.

She is interested to see my knitting and tells me stories of how her and her sisters sat around their kitchen table in Germany knitting or doing various forms of needlework while listening to the radio. 
Ah, the wonderful pre-TV days.

She gets her own aching body out of her chair and begins to pull out stacks of linens from her hutch.

Oma shows me her handiwork all made before her marriage and brought over on the ship when she immigrated to America.

We talk, I admire and listen.
I have seen them all many times before, but on this day I pay close attention. For each pattern there is a set of three: a tablecloth, kitchen doilies, and a cover with a rod pocket that hid the dirty dish towels drying on their rack. I hadn't know about the towel cover before. I always just assumed the pocketed cloths were curtains. It pays to listen and learn.
Her past memory is as keen as can be.

She is happy in that moment and so am I.

Take Care,
Sharing with Fiber Arts Friday

Monday, February 3, 2014

More Rule Breaking

The pictures I took of the alligators all along the side of the road were from inside the car. Some even from that car moving. Venturing too close to the species is a good rule that not even I would break.
[Fritz on the other hand...]

Sometimes however, rules are just made to be broken. Like when the grandsons come to the farm for a few days while their parents take a little trip on their own.

They have the free reign to raid the cookie jar at will,

and to sprinkle 'just a little' sugar on their apple pancakes all by themselves.

 Since we must show a little sensibility and give the parents a somewhat better report, there are no rules concerning access to books of all sorts,

and plenty of time outdoors where much waits to be learned.

Like the value of work,

and the value of play,

 and the value of discovery.

Thank goodness, there are no rules on just how much love this Marme and Papa receive in return.