Friday, September 28, 2012

Is there a crafty gene?

I grew up in an atmosphere surrounded by people who loved to craft.  So I guess you could say that it is in my blood. 

My Grandma Ruby could have taken Martha Stewart with one arm tied behind her back any day.  She could cook and rarely needed a recipe.  She crocheted like the wind.  It think she could replicate any pattern if you'd just give her a few minutes to look at the finished object you'd like her to copy. Give her a pile of yarn and help her find her "good hook" (she was always misplacing it and blaming the kids) and she could come up with a beautifully designed project that would knock magazine editor's socks off.  She could sew anything you needed.  She even made extra spending money sewing for others.  And I was lucky enough to grow up in her presence.  I soaked up as much of her creative mojo as possible.  I inherited her collection of crochet hooks, and I consider them among my most prized possessions. 

My Grandma Martha was just as crafty and creative as Grandma Ruby.  She was adventurous in her pursuits.  She is where I get my "try anything once" attitude.  She was a gifted seamstress.  I never heard of anyone else who would sew homemade work gloves just because she had the materials and thought she could figure it out.  She quilted in the wintertime and gardened in the summer.  She wasn't afraid to try her hand at the scroll saw to cut out wooden blanks for painting either. 

The thing is that neither of these super special ladies considered themselves "crafters".  They were just country women who knew how to meet the needs of their families on limited resources.  As I grew up and started my own family, I have realized that these ladies are a dying breed.  There was nothing trendy or cool about what they did.  There were just down-to-earth ladies who were taking care of business.

Now, I am raising two boys of my own.  My oldest (9 years old) has always loved to cook and craft.  When he was little he would ask if we could "make" together.  In the last month, he has taken up crochet, and I have to say that he has just about mastered the basics.  I only hope that I can live up to the example that my two grandmothers set as I try to pass down the skills that they taught me. 

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